Compiled By Danson Matekwa
The environment provides us with life-sustaining resources, and it’s essential to preserve and protect them. It is a home for many living species and maintains the balance in the ecosystem. There are many threats to the environment, such as deforestation and pollution, which affect not only us but all living beings around us.
World Environment Day (WED) is on such an initiative to spread awareness about the conservation and preservation of the environment. Celebrated on June 5th every year, people from all places take part in doing their bit for the environment. World Environment Day is an initiative started by the United Nations as a part of the UN Environment Programme.
June 5th was declared as World Environment Day by the UN General Assembly at the Stockholm Conference on Human Environment in 1972. Many important environmental issues, as well as human interactions with the environment, were discussed at this conference. Universal principles to guide citizens to protect the environment were agreed upon by nations.
World Environment Day provides a platform for everyone around the globe to speak out about issues facing the environment.
World Environment Day 2021 – Theme
The theme for World Environment Day 2021 is ‘Ecosystem Restoration’. The global host for the big day will be Pakistan.
Furthermore, this year the day will also witness the launch of the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration.
United Nations Decade on Ecosystem Restoration 2021–2030
The UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration – is part of a sequence of joint efforts led by the WHO. The joint venture will solicit to reinforce multi-sectoral collaboration and engagement at the human, animal, plant, and ecosystem interface, also known as One Health.
The collaboration of WHO with the UN came in just a day prior to World Environment Day which is observed every year on June 5. This collaboration of WHO and UN aims to prevent and reverse the degradation of ecosystems and the diversity of life. Ecosystem restoration will help in improving the productivity and capacity of ecosystems to meet the needs of society.
Along with the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), and some other partners, WHO will also work as a collaborating agency.
“The UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration, declared by the UN General Assembly, aims to massively scale up the restoration of degraded and destroyed ecosystems as a proven measure to fight the climate crisis and enhance food security, water supply and biodiversity,” reads a statement by the UN.
COVID EFFECT ON ENVIRONMENT
Even though the lockdowns helped the environment to breathe better air quality for a while, a surge in the production of biological waste in form of PPEs, masks etc. have resulted in a new form of waste stream in different countries.
Students as change makers
Preparing students for their future requires active classrooms and successful learning. Students spend nearly a third of their life in schools, shaping their personalities that are hard to change later. Their integration into society later on in life depends on their personal qualities and skills that are largely the product of a well-organized and well completed education, including the warm atmosphere of mutual understanding and experience in all school subjects. Global environmental challenges such as climate change, pollution and biodiversity loss should be taught to students at a tender age, which will then form a lifestyle going into the future.