Today, March 21st 2016, is International Day of Forests; this is an opportunity to celebrate the many ways in which forests provide for us.
International Day of Forests was established by resolution of the United Nations General Assembly on November 28, 2012. This year the United Nations focus is water and raising awareness of how important forests are to the supply of our freshwater.
How are forests so important to our daily needs?
The United Nations shares these key messages with us:
- Forested watersheds and wetlands supply 75 percent of the world’s accessible freshwater.
- About one-third of the world’s largest cities obtain a significant proportion of their drinking water directly from forested protected areas.
- Nearly 80 percent of the world’s population – 8 out of 10 people – is exposed to high levels of threat to water security.
- Improved water resource management can show considerable economic gains.
- Forests act as natural water filters.
- Climate change is altering forests role in water flows and the availability of water resources.
- Forests have a crucial role in building and strengthening resilience.
Around 1.6 billion people, including more than 2,000 indigenous cultures rely upon forests for their livelihood; yet every year 13 million hectares of forest are destroyed annually. Deforestation accounts for 12-20 percent of the global greenhouse gas emissions.
How can you contribute to International Day of Forests?
- Promote the day through social media using #IntForestDay and share the logo.
- Create an event celebrating forests.
- Follow the official International Day or Forests event via webcast. (21 March, 12:00-13:00 GMT+1)
- Plant a tree!
- Can’t plant a tree because you live in an apartment? ‘Sponsor’ the planting of a tree through Rainforest Rescue, to help restore the rainforest.
- Leave nature as you found it – always take your rubbish with you!
Why is the Daintree Rainforest so important?
- The diversity of the Daintree Rainforest is greater than any other ecosystem in Australia.
- The Daintree Rainforest is home to 19 of the world’s most primitive plant species.
- The lowlands of the Daintree Coast represent a range of forest types that for the most part have been destroyed.
- It is home to the greatest concentration of plant species which are rare, or threatened with extinction, anywhere in the world.
- Of Australia’s 36 mangrove species, 28 are found in the Daintree region.
To explore Cape Tribulation and the Daintree Rainforest join a day trip or spend a night or two or three in the World’s Oldest Rainforest, with Jungle Tours Adventures.
See you soon in the Rainforest!
Images courtesy of Tourism Tropical North Queensland