Today is World Environment Day: one of the most important, global celebrations of nature.
Established in 1974, World Environment Day is about building partnerships between all levels of society to tackle the world’s biggest environmental problems. The theme for this year’s Environment Day is biodiversity.
Biodiversity refers to the incredible variety of life on Earth. This is a key element of healthy, resilient ecosystems, and reductions in biodiversity can make it harder for natural systems to respond to change (among other things).
Unfortunately, at least 1 million plant and animal species face extinction, primarily due to human actions. I’ll let Bill Nye explain why that matters:
If we’re going to slow biodiversity loss and create sustainable societies that work for everyone, the time to act is now.
Thankfully, the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and their partners have put out this toolkit full of suggestions on how we can act for nature. Here are a few steps things individuals can take:
- Adopt nature-friendly diets (e.g. eat less meat, or buy it from local, sustainably-run sources).
- Support urban and community gardens.
- Don’t buy single-use plastics: get reusable containers instead.
- Hold businesses an governments accountable on environmental issues.
- And more.
Also, while the World Environment Day toolkit doesn’t directly say this, vote for pro-environmental candidates!