World Environment Day is the greatest yearly event for the sake of the environment. It is celebrated every year on 5th June in order to create awareness about the environment and its conservation. 143 countries participate in this global event every year. World Environment Day is also referred to as Eco Day and Environment Day.
What is World Environment Day?
World Environment Day is a day on which governments, communities, organizations, and individuals from all over the world increase awareness among people about the necessity of protecting our environment and its resources. The main idea behind the introduction of the World Environment Day is to enlighten and educate people about their role in keeping the environment clean and livable.
World Environment Day is not just a day to create public awareness. It is also a day for environmental advocates and conservationists for celebrating their success after working hard throughout the year in order to make the world a better place to live in for all of us. It urges human beings belonging to different communities, social backgrounds, professions, religions, states, and countries to be united for the sake of protecting the environment. So, this day is for everyone from everywhere.
History of the World Environment Day
The UN General Assembly established the World Environment Day or WED in the year 1972 as a part of the UNEP (United Nations Environment Program). On the very first day of the famous Stockholm Conference on the Human Environment, the decision was taken for the establishment of the World Environment Day. Two years after this conference, World Environment Day was observed for the first time, in 1974.
The theme of the first World Environment Day was “Only One Earth.” Till 1987, World Environment Day was celebrated every year in the United Nations with a different theme each time. From 1987, the center of activities keeps rotating every year. This means that different countries get to host the event on this special day in which environmental issues are discussed.
‘World Environment Day’ Themes
Every year, the World Environment Day has a unique theme on which activities and events are focused. Some of the popular themes are “Only One Earth” (1974), “Water: Vital Resource for Life” (1976), “Desertification” (1984), “Global Warming; Global Warning” (1989), “Our Earth – Our Future – Just Save It!” (1999), “Give Earth a Chance” (2002), “Melting Ice-A Hot Topic?” (2007), “Forests: Nature at your Service” (2011) and “Zero Tolerance for the Illegal Wildlife trade” (2016).
Sylhet, Ontario, Dhaka, Islamabad, Mexico City, London, Torino, Tokyo, Adelaide, Rome, Ottawa, and New Delhi are some of the cities that have hosted World Environment Day.
World Environment Day 2017
In 2017, Canada hosted the World Environment Day. “Connecting People to Nature- in the city and on the land, from the poles to the equator” was the theme of 2017 WED. Its aim was to remind people about the strong connection between nature and human beings. The theme implored people to appreciate nature’s beauty and bounty, to be one with nature. The main idea was to motivate people to think how deeply we are dependent on nature.
World Environment Day 2018
In 2018, World Environment Day’s global host in India. Prior to this India has hosted World Environment Day one more time in the year 2011. The theme of 2011 WED was “Forests: Nature at your Service.” The main event took place in New Delhi and it was a success.
The Indian Government is looking forward to promoting World Environment Day through fruitful events and activities inviting public interest as well as participation. India is about to set an example on this day by organizing plastic clean-up activities in public places, forests, beaches, and national reserves.
In order to reduce worldwide pollution caused by the use of plastic, the theme of this year is “Beat Plastic Pollution.” The theme urges industries, communities, governments, and individuals to join hands and find out recyclable alternatives to plastic. Plastic pollution is not only affecting human health but also polluting the oceans and destroying marine life.
Your responsibilities on World Environment Day
As inhabitants of the earth, it is our responsibility to take ownership of the environment we live in and actively contribute to the protection and preservation of the earth and its resources. Here is a list of some of the things that you can do on 5th June as a responsible citizen of the world.
- Clean up trash in your locality.
- Take a vow with your family to conserve energy by reducing electricity bills.
- Plant saplings in your neighborhood.
- Consume organic food on this day. You can prepare a meal with locally grown vegetables.
- Collect litters on roads along with your friends
- Organize an educational platform in your locality to discuss international environmental issues. Invite renowned people of the area to voice their opinions on crucial matters related to the environment.
- Do not contribute to causing air pollution for one day by leaving your car/ bike and take help of your legs or a bicycle to reach your destination.
- Put on green clothes to show your love and respect for nature and Mother Earth.
- Like we all make different New Year resolutions, promise yourself on World Environment Day that you will try to be sensitive towards the environment by doing environment- friendly things.
The importance of World Environment Day
Without public interest and awareness about the harmful effects of human activities on the environment, it is impossible to bring about positive changes. World Environment Day is not just about being environment- friendly for one particular day. On this day commitments are made that are to be followed the whole year. Environmentalists from several countries meet and discuss crucial issues related to the government and possible measures to save the environment.
We need to contribute every day to the protection of our environment and its resources not only for ourselves but also for our future generations. Only then the World Environment day will be a success.