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Nature; at your service – WED 2011

On 5th June this year we mark the World Environment day or WED 2011. This year WED supports the United Nations International Year of Forests with the theme, “Nature; at your service”. The United Nations General Assembly declared 2011 as the International year of forests to raise awareness on sustainable management, conservation and sustainable development of all types of forests.

For long we have mistreated our forests; we have deforested, we have over exploited, we have hackneyed and made them trite, we have shown no mercy at all. What most us forget is the blunt fact that these forests are home to some 80% of the terrestrial biodiversity on this planet. They cover 31% of the total land area; while livelihoods of 1.6 billion people depend on the forests, forests provide a home to more than 300 million people worldwide. The forests also play a major role as security, homes and livelihood for 60 million indigenous people around the world.

Forests are large “carbon sinks”, they intake carbon dioxide from the air and emits oxygen which then attempts to keep a balance in the natural “circle of life”. They store carbon and sucks in carbon dioxide from the atmosphere locking it into their biomass. It therefore plays an important role in battling global climate change. Plants are considered as an important mitigation tool for global warming.

The more the plants, the more the forests! The more the forests, the more the cleaner air becomes! Forests play a major role in sustaining quality supply of fresh water, more than three quarters of the worlds accessible fresh water comes from the forested catchments. Forests are also the most biologically diverse ecosystem on the land. Many of the planets most threatened, rare and endangered animals live in those forests. Forests provide us with timber, fuel, rubber, paper and medicinal plants which are important natural resources.

Forests do matter!!!

In the Maldives, we may not have huge a forest cover, however we too should preserve the existing small but very unique jungles referred locally as “Valu therey” in our Islands. It must be our responsibility to protect and preserve these green patches on our tinny Island nation.

ECOCARE Maldives call all Island communities to preserve and protect these “Valu therey” areas of your islands. Support WED 2011 and ECOCARE Maldives in the conserving and preserving these small but important forest covers. Remember that every simple action of conservation and preservation always matter. Remember that every single plant or tree does matter. Let’s all join together on this World Environment day, 5th June 2011, to celebrate Forests: Nature at your service.

Visit the official WED 2011 site.

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