Brace up for 2018 World Environmental Day, it’s destination India!
Every year the World Environment Day focuses on a theme that beams the spotlight on a pressing environmental concern, and this year is no different. Come June 5th, India will play host to the world for the 2018 World Environment Day with the theme “Beat Plastic Pollution.” This year’s theme was chosen in a bid to combat global single-use plastic pollution by encouraging individuals, governments, industries and communities to work harmoniously and efficiently to minimize the use of these materials and to develop alternatives that are more sustainable.
It is estimated that 300 million tonnes of plastic of various kinds are being produced annually worldwide of which 8 million tonnes end up in the oceans. This translates to 500 billion plastic bags in use per annum and 1 million plastic bottles being bought per minute. The damage caused by the dumping of these single-use plastics in our oceans is a major threat not only to marine life but to human life as well. In fact, a 2017 study by the World Economic Forum projects that at the current rate of plastic dumping, oceans of the world will have more plastic than fish by 2025.
The announcement of this year’s host was made on February 19th 2018 in New Delhi by the Indian Minister of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Dr Harsh Vardhan, in the company of the UN Under-Secretary-General and Head of UN Environment, Erik Solheim. This year’s gathering is fitting to be hosted by India because it is estimated that India generates 5.6 million tonnes of plastic waste annually and have over time, demonstrated immense leadership in climate change with one of the highest recycling rates in the world. In preparation for the World Environment celebrations, the government of India is committed to engaging people in Pan-Indian plastic clean-up activities in public areas such as beaches, forests, national reserves etc., The Indian Minister assures the world of India’s commitment to a cleaner and greener Earth in line with Indian philosophy and lifestyle which is rooted in the co-existence of man with nature.