Date: Thursday, 22nd June 2023; 7th Anniversary.
Sponsor: Rainforest Partnership – a U.S.-based non-profit organization
The World Rainforest Day is annually observed for the following purposes:
- To recognize the importance of rainforest as one of the most powerful and cost-effective climate change mitigation instruments,
- to raise awareness about the challenges the world’s rainforests are facing,
- to encourage actions to protect and restore the world’s rainforests.
The first World Rainforest Day was held around the world on 22nd June 2017.
In 1986, an international rainforest movement was started to motivate people all over the world in defense and protection of the rainforests.
In 2007, a non-profit environmental organization – Rainforest Partnership – was found in the United States, with the headquarter in Austin, Texas. The Rainforest Partnership is partnered with organizations worldwide to help protect the rainforest, save biodiversity, and combat the effects of climate change. It is an affiliated member of the United Nations Economic and Social Council.
In 2017, the Rainforest Partnership launched the World Rainforest Day on 22nd June, in order to raise awareness about the importance of the rainforest and what it does for us. The day is endorsed by over 70 global partners, from environmental advocates to media outlets, all striving for positive and affirmative action that preserves the rainforest. Since then, the World Rainforest Day is annually held around the world on 22nd June.
Why do we mark the World Rainforest Day?
Rainforests are a type of forest full of rainfall that is continuous all year round. They are usually found in the tropics and temperate zones. Rainforests are vital for the health of ecosystems and the survival of life on Earth. In addition to providing us with freshwater and many food products (such as cacao, coffee, spices, and fruits), rainforests can absorb carbon dioxide, release oxygen, and stabilize climate patterns. Moreover, rainforests are an untapped resource for new medicines. Rainforests cover around 6% of Earth’s surface. However, they are home to around 50% of the world’s plant and animal species.
With population growth in recent decades, however, the area of rainforests has been decreasing rapidly. The common causes of deforestation include logging, mining, industrial development, and the clearance of land for agriculture. It is estimated that up to 78 million hectares of rainforest are destroyed each year. Since 1980, the disappeared rainforests have stripped an area equivalent to the size of Europe, or 1 billion hectares.
Wherever a field of rainforest is removed, the surrounding wildlife habitats and homes of indigenous peoples are disrupted. Not only can deforestation cause flooding, soil erosion, desertification and climate change, but it also threatens our biodiversity, our way of life, and imperils our planet’s health. Globally, deforestation results in an increase of 15% of the total carbon dioxide emissions—more than from all cars in the U.S. and China combined. In the era of global warming, thus, it is imperative to protect and restore rainforests. The World Rainforest Day is an opportunity to raise awareness about deforestation and encourages action to protect and preserve rainforests.
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