Poachers in Africa are encroaching on wildlife land and killing rhinos in travel hot spots now devoid of visitors due to the coronavirus pandemic.
22 March is World Water Day
This year’s edition of World Water Day is dedicated to leaving no one behind in achieving SDG 6, which aims to ensure access to clean water and sanitation for all.
Water is life. Life on our Planet originated from water, and without it the world would cease to exist. Two thrids of our body, as well as the Earth, is made up of water. Water played a central role in making human existence possible: from fish that came out of the primordial soup to reach the dry land, to all those civilizations that rose up on the shores of a sea or along a river.
Millions of people without water
22 March is World Water Day, the day chosen by the United Nations in 1993 to highlight the importance of preserving this source and making it available to everyone worldwide. According to UNICEF, indeed, there are about 750 million people in the world who don’t have access to drinking water, while in other countries people have drinking water even in the toilet.
The 2019 edition
The theme of World Water Day 2019 is “Leaving no one behind“, a clear reference to the underlying objective of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), to improve the living conditions of all the world’s inhabitants. In particular, SDG number 6 aims to “ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all”. Today, over 2 billion people worldwide don’t have clean and safe water in their homes, and many groups such as women, children, refugees, indigenous peoples and disabled people are marginalised and face discrimination in accessing this essential resource.
Water is essential to survive and protect our health – one third of the world’s population doesn’t have access to adequate sanitation – but is also of vital importance for creating new jobs and promote economic, social and human development. The 2017 edition of World Water Day was dedicated to wastewater to highlight the importance of a correct management of wastewater for human and environmental health, especially of marine ecosystems. The UN wants to improve by 2030 “water quality by reducing pollution, eliminating dumping and minimizing release of hazardous chemicals and materials, halving the proportion of untreated wastewater and increasing recycling and safe reuse globally”.
On the occasion of the international day, that aims to highlight the need to reduce consumption of water resources at home as well as globally, a number of initiatives have been organised throughout the world.
We’ve long taken it for granted, but water is not an infinite resource. Climate, agriculture, health and life itself on our Planet depend on it. The hashtags used in the social media are #WaterIsWork and #WorldWaterDay.
Actor and environmental activist Leonardo DiCaprio has contributed two million dollars to a fund to protect Virunga National Park in Congo from threats such as terrorism, the coronavirus and poaching.
21 March is dedicated to trees, forests, and their indissoluble bond with life on Earth. They must be protected, cultivated and celebrated.
Bangladesh suffered widespread damage as a result of Cyclone Amphan. Yet the Sundarbans mangrove forest acted as a natural barrier protecting the country from further destruction, as it has done countless times before.
For the first time in seventeen years, Iceland’s two main whaling companies won’t resume whale hunting. The announcement concerns this year’s season but could carry into the future.
The relationship between the coronavirus and wildlife is complex: while the pandemic may lead to a reduction in the illegal trade in wild animals, it may also encourage it in other respects.
The largest coral reef in the world is severely threatened by climate change, but researchers are developing strategies that could contribute to saving the Great Barrier Reef.
NGO Free the Bears has opened a mountain sanctuary for moon bears in Laos. With the government’s help, it aims to close all bile farms by 2022.
The Covid-19 pandemic is a planetary wake-up call from the Earth to humanity. On Earth Day, over 500 organisations launched a global call for urgent action with the health and wellbeing of all peoples and the planet at its core.