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04 June 2021
World Environment Day (WED) is a United Nations initiative to encourage awareness and action to protect our environment. WED spreads the message that it is our responsibility to be agents of change, and take care of the earth. Over the years, WED has grown into a global platform for public outreach celebrated in more than 100 countries, with thousands of people participating in individual and organized environmental action.
This year Pakistan will be hosting the World Environment Day 2021, with the theme “Ecosystem Restoration” and a special focus on creating a good relationship with nature. Ecosystem Restoration means assisting the recovery of ecosystems that have been degraded and destroyed as well as conserving the ecosystems that are still intact. This year’s event will also mark the launch of the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration (2021–2030).
ICIMOD will be celebrating WED on 4 June 2021.
ICIMOD is also co-organizing a side-event on “Mountain ecosystem restoration” as a part of the World Environment Day celebrations, being hosted by the Ministry of Climate Change, Government of Pakistan from 11:00-13:00 Pakistan Standard Time (UTC+05:00) on 2 June. The session will feature a keynote address to contextualize the theme, and a panel discussion on good practices in restoration at the regional, national, and local level. This will be followed by a question and answer session and interaction with participants.
Today, to mark World Environment Day 2021, let me reiterate the significance of the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration 2021-2030.
World Environment Day 2021
The United Nations Decade on Ecosystem Restoration (2021-2030) defines ecosystem restoration as the recovery of ecosystems that have been degraded or destroyed, as well as conserving the ecosystems that are still intact. Healthier ecosystems, with richer biodiversity, yield greater benefits such as more fertile soils, bigger yields of timber and fish, and larger stores of greenhouse gases. Between now and 2030, the restoration of 350 million hectares of degraded terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems could generate US$9 trillion in ecosystem services. Restoration could also remove 13 to 26 gigatons of greenhouse gases from the atmosphere. The economic benefits of such interventions exceed nine times the cost of investment, whereas inaction is at least three times more costly than ecosystem restoration. Restoring ecosystems large and small protects and improves the livelihoods of people who depend on them. It also helps to regulate disease and reduce the risk of natural disasters. In fact, restoration can help us achieve all of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals.
In line with the theme for this year’s World Environment Day, and the launch of the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration, ICIMOD is organizing a photo contest on the theme of “Ecosystem restoration in the Hindu Kush Himalaya”. The contest is open to the general public. Each entrant may submit up to five images on ecosystem restoration (please refer to submission requirements and rules below). Entries will be judged on relevance, composition, originality, technical quality, and the caption/s accompanying the image/s. Winners will be announced in October 2021. The 20 best entries will be featured in ICIMOD’s website and highlighted in its communications and outreach platforms.
Read the eligibility and submission guidelines carefully before entering your photo(s) for the contest.
You may submit up to three entries in any of these categories (and a total of five across categories) by filling in the image submission form at https://photo.icimod.org/
30 July 2021
Cash prizes will be awarded to the three best photo entries in any of the thematic categories. Winning entries will also receive a certificate.
Entries must highlight examples or the significance of ecosystem restoration, such as the restoration of degraded terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems, forests, grasslands and rangelands, biological corridors, springsheds, and other examples such as agroforestry, urban forestry, organic farming, removal of invasive species, and restoration of polluted or degraded areas. Images that tell the story of how individuals and communities are involved in restoring ecosystems that they depend on are highly encouraged. For more examples of ecosystem restoration, please refer to website of UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration.
Participation in the digital photo contest is free and open to anybody anywhere in the world except to ICIMOD staff, ICIMOD consultants, and their immediate family members.
Each entrant may submit up to three entries by properly filling in the image submission form (see “How to enter”).