World Environment Day, June 5 2009: Your Planet needs you
World Environment Day is celebrated every year on June 5, and the theme for this year is 'Your Planet Needs You-UNite to Combat Climate Change'.
Started in 1972 by the UN General Assembly, it marked the opening of the Stockholm Conference on the Human Environment.
This day is an opportunity to raise awareness worldwide for the environment and the problems facing our world today.
World Environment Day is intended to:
Give a human face to environmental issues; Empower people to become active agents of sustainable and equitable development; Promote an understanding that communities are pivotal to changing attitudes towards environmental issues; Advocate partnership which will ensure all nations and peoples enjoy a safer and more prosperous future.
This is ahead of the climate convention meeting in Copenhagen later this year, but the World Environment Day 2009 conference is to be held in Mexico, to further enhance Latin America's role in the world against climate change.
Mexico is also a sponsor of the UNEP's Billion Trees campaign, but it is failing to let deforestation happen in their own country, and is only fifth in the world for this major problem.
Greenpeace had this to say:
"We call on the government of (President) Felipe Calderon to be coherent. It's not possible to extol Mexico as an example in defending the environment ... whilst systematically destroying ecosystems with environment policies which do not stop deforestation," a statement said.
About 600,000 hectares a year are lost to deforestation, which is an area about four times the size of Mexico City.
There are many different ways each country is recognizing World Environment Day, but everyone needs to do their part individually as well.