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This year, the World Environment Day theme is Green Economy: Does it include you?

WED Pack

Welcome!

Welcome to your quick guide to celebrating World Environment Day on 5 June, 2012.

This year, the World Environment Day theme is Green Economy: Does it include you? This highlights that the Green Economy as an essential rethink to the way we do business, if we are to create a brighter future.

But more importantly, the theme accentuates the fact that ‘you’ are an important element to its success and invites you to evaluate whether the steps being taken by the government, private sector, civil society and community in your area ‘include you.’

This guide is designed to inspire you with exciting ideas, as well as give you practical suggestions for organizing your event. Make your environment efforts known by celebrating WED and registering them!

Background

World Environment Day was established by the United Nations General Assembly to mark the opening of the 1972 Stockholm Conference.

Celebrating World Environment Day is about the inspirational power of individual actions that collectively become an exponential force for positive change.
World Environment Day thematic celebrations have in the past included caring for the earth and water, the ozone layer, climate change, desertification and sustainable development, to mention a few.

World Environment Day is celebrated around the world in many ways, including street rallies, bicycle parades, green concerts, essay and poster competitions in schools, tree planting, recycling efforts, clean-up campaigns and much more.

Why celebrate World Environment Day?

When we see or experience the negative effects of climate change and environmental degradation, it is easy to blame others - governments for not prioritizing environmental policy; corporate organizations for raising greenhouse gas emissions; NGOs for not lobbying strongly enough for the environment; and individuals for not taking action. World Environment Day however is a day we put aside our differences and instead celebrate the achievements we've made towards protecting the environment.

By celebrating World Environment Day, we remind ourselves and others of the importance of caring for our environment. Remember that every action counts, so join us: every year, everywhere, everyone!

Green Economy: Does it include you?

The 2012 World Environment Day theme is Green Economy: Does it include you? 2012 is also the 40th anniversary for World Environment Day, since the creation of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) in 1972.

In this significant year for the environment and sustainable development, the world leaders will once again meet at the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development twenty years after the historic Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro, 1992.

Dubbed Rio+20, one of the main themes of this Summit is ‘a green economy in the context of sustainable development and poverty eradication’.

The Green Economy touches almost every aspect of our lives and concerns our development. For example, it is about sustainable energy, green jobs, low carbon economies, green policies, green buildings, agriculture, fisheries, forestry, industry, energy efficiency, sustainable tourism, sustainable transport, waste management, water efficiency and all other resource efficiency. These are all elements involved in the successful implementation of a green economy.

2012 has also been declared by the United Nations as the International Year of Sustainable Energy for All. World Environment Day this year will complement this global concern with the official tagline – Green Economy: Does it include you?

Linking World Environment Day to the Green Economy however should not limit or stop you from celebrating your other environmental achievements. After all, every positive environmental action has an impact, and part of the fun is finding creative ways to link your activity to the Green Economy – and there are many.