World Environment Day
The United Nations designated 5 June as World Environment Day to highlight that the protection and health of the environment is a major issue, which affects the well-being of peoples and economic development throughout the world. The celebration of this day provides us with an opportunity to broaden the basis for an enlightened opinion and responsible conduct by individuals, enterprises and communities in preserving and enhancing the environment.
The year 1972 marked a turning point in the development of international environmental politics, with the first major conference on environmental issues, known as the Conference on the Human Environment, or the Stockholm Conference. Later that year, on 15 December, the General Assembly adopted a resolution (A/RES/2994 (XXVII)) designating June 5 as World Environment Day and urging "Governments and the organizations in the United Nations system to undertake on that day every year world-wide activities reaffirming their concern for the preservation and enhancement of the environment, with a view to deepening environmental awareness."
What UNESCO does for Environmental Protection
Message from Shamila Nair-Bedouelle, Assistant Director-General for Natural Sciences of UNESCO
With its unique designated sites, UNESCO has been a leader in promoting in-situ solutions to the global challenges of terrestrial, coastal, and marine biodiversity loss.
UNESCO’s strategy for biodiversity is implemented in its designated sites. Over 10 million km², roughly 6% of the earth’s landmass, is already under one or more UNESCO designation, through its 1,121 World Heritage sites (including 252 natural and mixed sites and 114 cultural landscapes), its 714 Biosphere Reserves and its 161 Global Geoparks. UNESCO is also about the soft power to convene diverse interests, unite diverse cultures and emphasize shared human values. UNESCO believes that it is possible to transform mind sets to achieve sufficient momentum to bring change in this critically important UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration.
Conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity: UNESCO designated sites
On the occasion of the International Day for Biological Diversity, Friday 22 May, Audrey Azoulay, Director-General of UNESCO, Jane Goodall, a primatologist famous for her studies on chimpanzees and ambassador for the Great Apes Survival Partnership launched by the United Nations, remind us that the global COVID-19 crisis must not make us forget to defend our planet's flora and fauna.