World Environment Day is observed annually on 5th June to raise awareness and action about the protection of the environment. It was first observed in 1974. In the present, 143 countries participate in the global platform for public outreach. Each year, a theme or forum is provided to engage governments, businesses and citizens to address the pressing issues that concern the environment.
This year, the theme is Ecosystem restoration . Ecosystem restoration means helping in the recovery of degraded or destroyed ecosystems. However, it also includes protecting the ecosystems that are still intact. Studies show that every three seconds, the world loses enough forest that can cover a football pitch. Over the last century, 50% of the World’s wetlands have been destroyed. Again, over 50% of the world’s coral reefs have been destroyed. By 2050, it is estimated that this number will be 90%. Ecosystem restoration means putting a pause to this damage.
The restoration of ecosystems can be assisted by anyone— from big governments and businesses to individual citizens. Here are some ways, you as an individual can help:
As cliche as it sounds, planting trees can help significantly in preserving the terrestrial ecosystems. Go one step further and take up a leadership role in organising a planting campaign in your community. You can also support organisations that plant trees or volunteer in such programs organised in your locality. Other ways you can help is by feeding the animals that have made your locality as their own home like the stray dogs, cats, pigeons and other birds. You can always keep a water bowl in a convenient place so that this animals and birds can quench their thirst specially in the summer.
Almost all products such as clothing, accesories, storage, stationary, food and so on, now have sustainable alternatives. It is high time that we support businesses that provide such alternatives and walk away from the much less environment friendly companies. However, it comes as no shock that sustainable products are more expensive than their harmful counterparts. We must make it our habit to shop sustainably whenever we can. Changing our diet to a vegan or vegetarian diet is good for the environment. At the very least, we must explore and adopt a more environment-friendly way of life.
Raising your voice in support of ecosystem conservation and restoration might seem like it won’t make much of a difference. But in this day and age where social media is such a powerful tool, such voices matter a lot. Big brands and even governments care about their image on media— traditional and social. You can take this opportunity to raise your voice. These big names are bound to be pressured to make sustainable efforts to preserve the environment if enough people speak out.
It is everyone’s responsibility to protect the environment that we are part of. It is crucial to preserve all types of ecosystem. No matter how small a part we play, our part is still absolutely necessary.
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