The first day of Stockholm Conference on the Human Environment in 1972 led to the commencement of World Environment Day celebration. The day is celebrated on 5th June every year that encourages worldwide awareness and action for the protection of our environment.
Since its inception, environment day has developed into a huge global platform for raising awareness and taking steps forward to protect our environment. Over 143 countries are a part of the United Nations Environment Program that celebrate world environment day with full enthusiasm. Every year, WED is celebrated with a theme to combat various environmental issues to make the environment pollution free.
India is the Global host of 45th World Environment Day celebrations. “Beat Plastic Pollution” is the theme for World Environment Day 2018 with an objective to combat the menace of single-use plastic that is polluting our environment and threatening human health. Mentioning the reason for why India has been chosen as a host this year, Erik Solheim, United Nations Under-Secretary-General and Head of UN Environment said –
“India is emerging as a leader; given it has one of the highest recycling rates in the world. It can be instrumental in combating plastic pollution. By hosting World Environment Day 2018, the Indian government is accelerating its leadership on an issue of tremendous magnitude.”
Indian government is taking a series of steps to clean our environment, setting a leading example for other countries. PAN India plastic clean-up drives in public areas, national reserves, forests and beaches have been initiated. The Ministry of Environment, Forest, and Climate Change has taken the following actions:
- Plastics have been banned in all the protected areas around the country. These have been declared as “plastic free zones.”
- To clean water bodies, 19 teams involving school and college students, and local communities have been formed. They have undertaken cleaning of 24 beaches and an equal number of polluted riverfronts and lakes across India.
- To spread awareness on proper utilisation of plastic, a marathon will be organised in New Delhi, Bengaluru, Ahmedabad, Gangtok, Bhopal and Bhubaneswar on June 3 by the ministry.
Now let us all start taking initiatives at our own ends to beat plastic pollution and help our government in cleaning our nation. It is our duty to keep our surroundings clean. Let us all be responsible for our own wastes and make India proud this environment day by avoiding the use of single-use plastic.