UN International Day of Forests: 21 March 2016

The 4th UN International Day of Forests will be held on the 21st March 2016. The annual event aims to raise awareness of the importance of forests to human existence. The world’s forests provide us with clean air, water and climate regulation, an estimated 1.6 billion people rely on forests for livelihood; for shelter, food, fuel and medicine.

This year’s theme is ‘Forests and Water‘, exploring interconnections between forests and water and their importance in securing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development ‘Transforming our World‘.  The 2030 Agenda is a UN resolution adopted in 2015 which recognises the importance of the world’s natural resources, including forests, in advancing social and economic development. Goal 15 of the Agenda calls for the the protection and restoration of terrestrial ecosystems and the sustainable management of forests. Goal 6 calls for the availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all, with the aim of protecting and restoring water-related ecosystems, including forests, by 2020.

The UN is hosting a joint celebration of the International Day of Forests and World Water Day on 21st March. The speakers, representing Europe, America and Asia (not another UN forum without African representation?) will discuss Forests, Water and Economic Development. The event will be live streamed via UN Web TV between 10am and 1pm, New York time.

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