An annual event of global importance will take place this Sunday, June 5, as the world observes World Environment Day.

This year’s focus, Forests: Nature at Your Service, was chosen in an effort to bring the spotlight on issues such as degradation and deforestation, which is said to be responsible for nearly 20 per cent of global greenhouse gas emissions.?? With 2011 declared as the International Year of the Forests by the United Nations, greater attention will be drawn to the importance of woodlands and their role in providing balance to our environment.??

Forests, which account for a third of the world’s land mass, assist in minimising the effects of climate change, by absorbing carbon dioxide (from exhaust fumes, for example) from the atmosphere; help regulate water sources and decrease the impact

of erosion, storms and floods; and provide a home for various species of plant and animal life and a livelihood for millions of people.

India will serve as host for World Environment Day celebrations this year, however, all nations worldwide seek to participate not only on the day of observance, but throughout the month of June, as Barbados will do this month.

World Environment Day, which was first observed in 1972, is seen as an opportunity for all global citizens to chart a path to a cleaner and greener present and future as government continues to encourage persons to take action.?? Whether planting trees, recycling, using cloth bags for groceries or choosing reusable products, the continuous message for the Day has always been that everyone and every effort – counts.

For more information on World Environment Day, go to www.unep.com/wed, and for the Environment Month Calendar, go to the Media Downloads page at https://www.gisbarbados.gov.bb/.


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