Millions Across the World to Celebrate Environment Day
On June 5, people from all over the world are expected to come together to celebrate World Environment Day, cleaning up beaches, planting trees, and marching to save a planet that experts fear is on the verge of extinction.
More than 150 countries will stage environmental-themed events today. Environmentalists hope that this year's World Environment Day will spur a global effort to combat what they call the rapid decline of the natural world.
Inger Andersen, the Executive Director of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), said:
"We are running against the clock. Today, as we look to a future of heatwaves, droughts, floods, wildfires, pandemics, dirty air, wars, and plastic-ridden oceans, action is more important than ever.”
World Environment Day has raised awareness of several environmental issues throughout the previous 49 years, ranging from pollution to the ozone hole to deforestation. This year's event occurs when scientists and policymakers consider the planet to be in "emergency status."
According to a series of recent UN investigations, the climate problem is going faster than previously imagined, with a 50% chance of global warming exceeding 1.5 degrees Celsius beyond pre-industrial levels in the next five years.
This, combined with widespread biodiversity loss—1 million species are on the verge of extinction—and pollution has resulted in a "triple planetary crisis," according to UN Secretary-General António Guterres.
The subject of this year's World Environment Day, hosted by Sweden, is "Only One Earth," emphasising the importance of living sustainably in harmony with nature.
It emphasises the planet's fragility and is intended to reinforce the notion that the Earth is humanity's only home. The ceremonial event will take place at the Technology Museum with the participation of Swedish Minister for Climate and Environment Annika Strandhäll, UNEP Executive Director Inger Andersen, and a group of young people from Voices of the Future.
Sergels Square in Stockholm's city centre will be transformed into a "green plaza," where visitors may speak with environmental experts while viewing a specially constructed garden. In the presence of the Minister for Digitalisation and Energy, Khashayar Farmanbar, 60 EV charging stations will be opened across the city in Valhallavägen.
World Environment Day is a grass-roots campaign led by UNEP, with participation from communities, schools, corporations, and local governments. More than 150 countries will host activities and initiatives this year, ranging from coastal clean-ups in New Zealand to tree planting in Kenya.
The message of World Environment Day is that it is not too late to repair the damage that humanity has caused. People must make environmentally conscious decisions. Financial institutions must help in the transition to a greener future.