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World Environment Day
The Day strives to raise awareness and encourage action for the environment. It offers an opportunity to reflect on accomplishments and renew our resolve in overcoming the environmental challenges facing the world today. Held annually since 1974, World Environment Day is a vital platform for promoting progress on the environmental dimensions of the Sustainable Development Goals. Countries all over the world participate each year in national and international celebrations to champion environmental causes—governments, major corporations, non-governmental organization, local communities, celebrities and citizens across the world adopt the World Environment Day brand in support of the environment. World Environment Day 2020 is hosted by Colombia in partnership with Germany and focuses on biodiversity.
Let’s get involved!
This practical guide is structured in three parts: learn, share, and act. It is sensitive to the fact that many people may be isolating due to the COVID-19 pandemic. All you need to participate is a connection to the internet, a book, or even just your imagination.
What can we do as…
- Individuals: Each one of us has a role to play in ending biodiversity loss and preserving nature for human wellbeing. As individuals we must rethink what we buy and use and become conscious consumers.
- Faith groups: Faith groups at every level can inspire worshippers to live in harmony with the Earth and seek green jobs.
- Private sector: Businesses rely on their host environments and ecosystems for inputs into production and manufacturing processes. They can incorporate bold, sustainable practices in their supply chains and financing.
- Cities: Cities house the majority of people living on the planet today and consume around 75 per cent of the resources that come from nature. By 2050, the UN predicts 80 per cent of the world population will live in urban areas. Consequently, cities have a huge role to play in preserving the planet’s finite resources and providing services for people.
- Governments: Strong and committed environmental policy is key to ending biodiversity loss and preserving nature for human wellbeing. Governments have a central role in changing our current destructive course towards one of greater custodianship for the natural world by protecting and safeguarding wild spaces with ambition and accountability. Biodiversity is necessary for a range of human rights, including the rights to life, health, food, water and culture. In order to protect human rights, States have an obligation to protect ecosystems and biodiversity.
- Schools and teachers: Schools and teachers have a critical role to play in nurturing young people’s affinity for nature and building curricula that underscore the value of biodiversity and interest in future green job opportunities.
- Youth: Young people are the future, and the decisions made now will determine the kind of world you will inherit. Increasingly, you are making your voices heard with real impact. Young people have a role to play in preventing biodiversity loss and preserving nature for our future.
- Civil society organizations: As civil society we have a role to play in preventing biodiversity loss and preserving nature for our future. If we are to change the course of destruction, we must first LEARN about what we can do; SHARE that knowledge with our communities on World Environment Day; and once it is safe to do so, ACT on the things we need to change.
for further reading and to find out more about what actions you can take this World Environment Day.