Back to news

WED 2010 Message

Celebrating the World Environment Day

The World Environment Day, celebrated on June 5 every year gives us an opportunity to pause and reflect on the state of our environment. This year’s theme for World Environment Day, ’Many Species, One Planet, One Future‘, builds on the theme of the International Year of Biodiversity (IYB), ‘Biodiversity is Life, Biodiversity is our Life’. These themes point towards the urgency to protect, raise awareness, and better manage the planet’s natural resources.

Andreas Schild

2 mins Read

70% Complete

The Hindu Kush-Himalayan (HKH) region is among the most fragile and biodiversity-rich areas in the world. The biodiversity significance of the region has been realised by the countries sharing the region, and their commitment to protect and conserve biodiversity is well reflected in the establishment of 488 protected areas covering 39% of the region’s geographical area. However, protected areas alone are inadequate to ensure the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity, since there are various drivers of change such as population growth, climate change, excessive use of resources by poor and marginalised people, land use change, external market forces, and globalisation that threaten the biodiversity of the region. Conserving the biodiversity resources together with the promotion of sustainable use is vital, especially for poor and marginalised mountain communities who depend almost entirely on biodiversity resources for their daily livelihoods.

ICIMOD’s approach to biodiversity management is in line with the objectives of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) and focuses on large-scale conservation and planning at the landscape level. ICIMOD’s landscape approach in the Hindu Kush-Himalayan region looks into the linkages among the ecological, socio-cultural, and economic dimensions that support environmental and socioeconomic resilience. The culture and tradition of people in the region plays an important role in managing the biodiversity. Among many traditional practices, use of herbal plants is of great significance and contributes more than 80% of the medicinal requirements of the rural people. These traditional knowledge, practices, and cultural values have often been ignored. There is a strong need to orient our future generation, especially children towards the importance of these herbs and their uses.

The International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD) and National Trust for Nature Conservation (NTNC), together with the Private and Boarding Schools’ Organization of Nepal (PABSON), join the world in celebrating the World Environment Day on 5th June. As a part of the celebrations, ICIMOD and NTNC are organising a ‘Promoting Herbal Garden in Schools’ competition among schools in the Kathmandu valley, Nepal, supported by PABSON. Through this we will help to raise awareness about, and popularise the use of, commonly available and frequently used herbal plants, as well as helping to conserve the associated knowledge for future generations. The posters prepared by the students based on their gardens will be displayed at the 10th meeting of the Conference of Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) at Nagoya, Japan.

We hope that the World Environment Day will help to increase awareness and motivate students and their family members to recognise the importance of the traditional knowledge that helps maintain health and sustain biodiversity for future generations.

With best wishes,
Andreas Schild

Stay current

Stay up to date on what’s happening around the HKH with our most recent publications and find out how you can help by subscribing to our mailing list.

Sign Up

Related content

Continue exploring this topic

International Women’s Day 2013

This year’s theme, the Gender Agenda – Gaining Momentum, is especially significant to us in several ways as an International Centre ...

A year for mountains

Last I shared a message with you, we had just celebrated International Women’s Day on 8 March, a day I ...

30 Mar 2020 Climate change
Celebrating World Water Day 2020: Water and climate change

Rivers have been the life force of civilizations from time immemorial. The Indus Valley, Ganges, and Mesopotamia civilizations all emerged ...

A tale of two issues

Two issues were central for us this month: the need to challenge gender inequality and understanding the various dimensions and ...

World Water Day 2010

The recent report from the World Health Organization and UNICEF (Progress on Sanitation and Drinking Water – 2010 Update) shows ...


A couple of weeks have passed since the conclusion of UNFCCC COP26 in Glasgow, and we have had some time ...

World Environment Day 2014

On this day, I would like to draw your attention to another emerging challenge in the HKH ...

Accelerating change for sustainable water management in the HKH

As we join the global community in marking World Water Day with the theme ‘Accelerating Change’, we are yet again ...