Best Message.org photo courtesy
The world is now on the roll, despite the overwhelming pandemic, with environment authorities saying 2021 and the next years constitute “our moment to reimagine, recreate and restore” a healthy environment.
And the Philippines quickly joined other countries last weekend in celebrating World Environment Day which underscored the essence of nature and the environment.
We have beyond doubt been hobbled by the coronavirus pandemic which has gravely affected human lives and daily activities although there has been a gleam on the lifting plus side: it has improved the air quality and reduced water pollution.
With much of the country under General Community Quarantine, and some areas like Metro Manila and nearby provinces under heightened restrictions, there has been a substantial reduction in carbon emissions which has helped restore the ecological system.
But we agree with experts and health authorities that the disposal of medical waste like disinfectants, masks, gloves and the burden of untreated waste has also increased largely during the pandemic
At the same time, once the situation bounces back to normal, the environment may start suffering again.
And long-term goals and proper implementation of strategies and policies are the need of the hour for global environmental sustainability.
The theme for this year’s celebration is ‘Ecosystem Restoration’ and is celebrated worldwide to generate awareness of the environment and nature.
World Environment Day is celebrated on June 5 every year to remind people about the importance of nature and tell them that nature should not be taken for granted and must be respected for its values.
With the coronavirus outbreak and people being confined indoors, the environment and mother earth seem to have benefitted slightly.
In the absence of human activities amid the coronavirus-induced lockdown, nature is getting time to clean itself and reclaim its space.
World Environment Day is one of the biggest annual events by the United Nations to generate awareness about the significance of nature and greenery.
The United Nations Assembly established World Environment Day in 1972, which was the first day of the Stockholm Conference on the human environment.
In 1974, it was celebrated with the theme “Only One Earth.”
Since then, various host countries have been celebrating it, and the idea for rotating the center of these activities started. World Environment Day was first observed in 1974 in the US.
This year, the theme “Ecosystem Restoration” suggests that the main idea behind celebrating World Environment Day is to highlight the importance of the environment.
Pakistan is the global host for the big day. This day will also see the launch of the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration. In 2020, the theme was “Celebrate Biodiversity.”
The slogan “Reimagine, Recreate, Restore” is very apt, as we try to join hands with fellow countrymen – on a greater scale with fellow humankind across the continents – to mark the importance of nature and the environment.
For the present generation, although this has been repeatedly said, restoring, recreating and reimagining our healthy environment defines our moment and we cannot turn back time.
As succinctly suggested, the echoes of this on ring out loud across the continents: we can grow trees, green our cities, rewild our gardens, change our diets and clean up rivers and coasts.
We are the generation that can make peace with nature.
Let’s get active, not anxious indeed, and let’s be bold, not timid.