World Environment Day can be celebrated in many ways. The following are a selection of inspiring examples of how World Environment Day was celebrated in 2004 with the theme/slogan: Wanted! Seas and Oceans – Dead or Alive?; in 2005 with the theme/slogan: Green Cities: Plan for the Planet!; in 2006 Deserts and Desertification: Don't Desert Drylands!; and in 2007 Melting Ice - A Hot Topic?
Parks Victoria and the National Gallery of Victoria have joined forces to create an environmental trail entitled “the Altered Land”, with artworks from the permanent collection of Australian art. The trail highlighted environmental issues and explored the ways in which artists have captured the changing Australian landscape. Approximately fifty works of art were included in the trail, many of them depicting national park sites within Victoria. This important collaborative project was launched on 5 June 2005, at the Ian Potter Centre at Federation Square, Melbourne.
Australian Orangutan Project, an organization working for the protection of orang-utans, a highly endangered species, celebrated World Environment Day 2007 with a launch of a special fundraising drive, OrangeAid 2007, to gather funds to support projects helping orang-utan habitat restoration and rehabilitation.
On the occasion of World Environment Day 2007, Clean Up the World, a non-profit, non-government, apolitical organization that unites communities with a common focus to clean up the world, invited its member organizations around the globe to conduct environmental activities with a focus on climate change. Activities such as cleaning up local parks and waterways, planting trees, conducting walk-to-school or work days and organizing environmental education exercises were undertaken.
Clean Up the World, held in conjunction with the United Nations Environment Programme, mobilizes an estimated 35 million volunteers from more than 120 countries annually making it one of the largest community based environmental campaigns in the world.
In 2006, the Department of Environment organized an environmental Fair at the Bangladesh-China Friendship Conference Center in which government, NGOs and educational institutions took part, and a three-day national seminar and discussion on 5-7 June. Also organized were a children’s painting competition on 16 May at Shishu Children’s Academy; a rally and procession on 4 June in which thousands of men, women, and children, boy scouts and girl guides and environment protection campaigners participated; an essay competition on the theme: Don’t Desert Drylands!; the production of souvenirs and stickers in the six divisions and 64 districts of Bangladesh to create awareness on the environment.
To commemorate WED 2006, the Hangkong University conducted an international conference/training for researchers, technicians and administrators to present the results of the pilot project on Resource Recovery of Bioorganic Waste - RRU-BMW to produce clean energy (biogas) and clean compost from 3000 t of organic waste daily from the Megacity Shenyang. The compost could be used for fighting desertification 120 km north-west of Shenyang at the border of Inner Mongolia.
Hitachi Global Storage Technologies hosted in 2005 a celebration entitled “Green City, Green Home”, at Shenzhen Red Forest Eco-Park. Activities included: a clean-up of the park from the waste left by tourists, an environmental quiz, and a picture exhibition.
On the occasion of World Environment Day 2007, Wildlife Institute of India in collaboration with the Eco Task Force (127 Infantry Division of the Indian Army) organized a variety of activities in villages and schools around the Aglar Watershed area in Mussoorie. The activities included talks, film shows and a puppet show, focused on the day’s theme: forestation and climate change. Since the Eco task Force was celebrating its silver jubilee, this event was a curtain raiser for the celebrations.
Take a photo! The contest organized by the Institute of Chartered Financial Analysts of India University to mark World Environment Day 2007 had participants taking pictures with a camera, mobile phone or any photo capturing device. The entries, accompanied by a slogan in relevance to environmental issues, were put on display for public viewing on 5 and 6 June, while winners received an award.
For the 9th consecutive year, the National Safety Council of India (NSCI) promoted in 2007 the celebrations of World Environment Day among its members, more than 6500 of them comprising industrial and business establishments, institutions, trade union organizations, as well as its 16 State Chapters and 30 Action Centers located across India. The NSCI produced environmental awareness material related to climate change, such as a cloth banner with the World Environment Day theme: Melting Ice - A Hot Topic?, and colored posters with the caption Protect Your Planet – Control Global Warming. An information kit explaining the significance and objective of WED, various ways of celebrating it and a list of environmental legislations in India, and pocket guides on carbon emission trading, non-conventional energy saving sources and sustainability reporting guidelines were also distributed..
Trees for Delhi, a coalition of individuals and organizations working to preserve roadside trees and other green areas of New Delhi, organized in 2007 a public event which drew attention to the proposal to construct squash and badminton courts in the area for the Commonwealth Games in 2010, risking the loss of around 500 trees. It also highlighted the ongoing construction to cover a natural water channel adjoining the auditorium most likely for road widening which would lead to more trees being cut. The event pressed its demand for a mandatory 3 m tree line on either side of the road to preserve the roadside trees for now and future. Other events included a public petition for the previous, mural and graffiti painting, and Music.
In 2005, the United Nations Information Center, in cooperation with the NGO Green Front of Iran and Mellel (Nations) Cultural Centre, held a ceremony and panel discussion on green cities. Some 70 participants attended the event. UNDP programme officer Mr. Saeid Ferdowsi and two environmentalists participated in the panel discussion. In addition, as a side event, a one-day poster and picture exhibition was held at the Cultural Centre.
The United Nations Development Programme Country Office in Kyrgyzstan and Information Network CARNet used a new Internet-based method to promote ecological issues on the occasion of World Environment Day 2006. On 5 June, an exhibition of environmental caricatures and paintings, by the leading ecology expert in Central Asia and professor of geographic science, Dr. Emil Djaparovich Shukurov, was launched at UN House. Due to the great interest shown in this exhibition, CARNet network and portal www.caresd.net organized an Internet version of the exhibition, thus giving a wider audience an opportunity to see these unique works. CARNet staff, in close collaboration with various artists, carefully scanned and sorted out all the graphic materials and then exhibited them on their Internet portal. This initiative was undertaken at the same time as the exhibit opened. Cartoons presented at the exhibit highlighted environmental issues, as well as the interlinkages between donor organizations, NGOs and state bodies. Shukurov, also Head of the central asian environmental NGO, managed to illustrate diversity and the correlation between the environment and human activity.
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. The 3R practices were the focus of the first ever green campaign held in Ipoh city, in the Ipoh Parade Shopping Centre, from 5 to 7 June 2007. It aimed at promoting active citizen participation in caring for our environment, by creating awareness of environmental sustainability and promoting daily 3Rs.
In 2004, the World Fish Centre organized an awareness programme for its staff. Posters were placed in strategic locations in the office complex and articles about the year’s theme, Wanted! Seas and Oceans - Dead or Alive? were circulated. A special staff meeting was organized and staff members were treated to a short video on the state of the oceans. This led to discussions on how staff can help protect the environment.
In 2005, the Mongolian Nature and Environment Consortium established a community-based tree nursery in Uliastain. The nurseries were placed in areas that will be able to provide sustainable seedlings for the next 10-20 years and with the aim of greening the Uliastain area in the next five years. The Mongolian Nature and Environment Consortium provided technical and professional support to community members to fulfill the objectives.
To celebrate World Environment Day 2006, Nepal River Conservation Trust, a non-profit organization that was established by a group of river guides, organized the Bagmati River Festival. The two and a half months program focused on cleanup, public awareness which includes cycle rally, plastic reduction program and water sports events. All these events kicked off with the Bagmati River Bank clean up and public awareness program.
In 2004, International Waters called for deep sea protection from the Greenpeace flagship, Rainbow Warrior II, by urging the population not to put life in the deep sea out of mind, because it was out of sight. Rainbow Warrior left Auckland for waters around New Zealand to investigate and document bottom trawl fishing practices. It was part of an international campaign to protect deep sea life from the impacts of bottom trawling.
Ballance Agri- Nutrients, New Zealand's leading fertiliser manufacturer and distributor, organized an elaborate programme to mark the celebrations of World Environment Day 2007. The employees received information on the day’s theme and were asked to select an appropriate animal, for example a polar bear, and give an environmental justification of why that animal should be protected. The best justification from each site was selected and that animal was adopted by that Ballance site either at the Auckland Zoo or Orana Wildlife Park. Information on the animals was then sent out to all employees and incentives were given to employees who put in submissions, for example free passes to the zoo. Ballance Agri- Nutrients also held a BBQ at each site and employees were asked to provide environmental improvement suggestions for company.
In 2006, Stop Child Poverty Campaign planted trees at the local facilities for underprivileged and at risk children. This action benefited the children directly as it beautified their environment.
In 2005, Gogi Studios published the book The Garbage Monster on the theme of environment protection and cleanliness. The book, authored by the famous Pakistani cartoonist, Nigar Nazar, was colorfully illustrated and included a board game based on the Do’s and Don’ts of maintaining a healthy and clean environment. Translated in Urdu and printed by the Ministry of Environment, it was distributed to children in different provinces.
On 4 June 2004, the Society for Environment of Pakistan, a newly established non-profit organization, organized with the Environment Protection Agency and the Government of Sindh, a seminar at the Arts Council based on the theme Wanted! Seas and Oceans - Dead or Alive?
PAPUA NEW GUINEA
Southern Highlands Province and Gulf Province
To promote World Environment Day 2006, the WWF Kikori Programme organized a number of activities. These include: awareness patrols to villages, market areas and schools; tree planting at areas around Lake Kutubu that have sparse vegetation; and theatre performance by local group based on the theme Deserts and desertification.
South Korean designer, Lee Kyoungjae, and his label Eco-dress for Earth participated in World Environment Day 2007 by holding an exhibition that showcased Eco-Wedding Dresses. The dresses are made from 100% bio-degradable natural corn starch and can be degraded by micro-organisms within 4 weeks and, in turn, become natural nutriment. The exhibition promoted concepts of eco-friendly design to protect nature.
Galle, Southern Province
In 2004, Rainforest Rescue International launched an awareness programme for 10 selected schools in Galle and Matara districts. The initiative was part of a national programme coordinated by the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources and the participation of the relevant Municipal Councils of the two districts, which are the main coastal towns in the country. The main event took place at the Town Hall on 5 June and was followed by a tree planting. A beach clean-up was organized by the Matara Municipal Council, the University of Ruhuna and various environmental organizations. The film Biodiversity and the Sea, screened at the main bus station, attracted more than 1,000 participants.
In 2004, the Ministry of the Environment of French Polynesia organized a variety of events, including radio public service announcements, a film screening and a poster competition. Environmental associations and young people from the federation for non-denominational charities participated in the unveiling of billboards aimed at building awareness about the need to protect Panenoo Valley.
The programme “Ambassadors for the Environment,” launched on the ocean-liner Paul Gauguin, ran from June to August, and used the knowledge of trainers from Jean-Yves Cousteau’s Ocean Futures Society to educate children on the need to protect the rich resources of the ocean. The “Saga Vanille” campaign, geared towards less advantaged children, was also associated with the programme. Open-days were also organized at various diving clubs around the islands, so as to raise awareness amongst vacationers to the need to protect marine and lagoon ecosystems.
Ho Chi Minh City
To celebrate World Environment Day 2006, the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) together with the Ministry of Agriculture, and the Voice of Ho Chi Minh have produced an environmental radio soap opera for rural Vietnam that was launched in Hanoi by the Minister of Agriculture. This was followed by a site launch in Can Tho city. The drama series is broadcasted on the Voice of Ho Chi Minh twice a week for a year. It incorporates environmental issues using education-entertainment methods. This project is supported by the World Bank Development Marketplace Award 2005.