Too precious to lose
When we drink a glass of water, write in a notebook, take medicine for fever, or build a house, we do not always make the connection with forests. And yet, these and many other aspects of our lives are linked to forests in one way or another.
Forests, their sustainable management and use of resources, including in fragile ecosystems, are key to combating climate change, and to contribute to the prosperity and well-being of current and future generations. Forests also play a crucial role in poverty alleviation and in the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Forests cover one-third of the Earth’s landmass, performing vital functions around the world. Around 1.6 billion people – including more than 2,000 indigenous cultures – depend on forests for their livelihoods, medicines, fuel, food, and shelter.
Forests are the most biologically diverse ecosystems on land, home to more than 80% of the terrestrial species of animals, plants, and insects.
Yet despite all of these priceless ecological, economic, social, and health benefits, global deforestation continues at an alarming rate.
Forests and Biodiversity
The United Nations General Assembly proclaimed 21 March the International Day of Forests in 2012.
The organizers are the United Nations Forum on Forests and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), in collaboration with Governments, the Collaborative Partnership on Forests, and other relevant organizations in the field.
The Day celebrates and raises awareness of the importance of all types of forests. On each International Day of Forests, countries are encouraged to undertake local, national, and international efforts to organize activities involving forests and trees, such as tree-planting campaigns. The theme for each International Day of Forests is chosen by the Collaborative Partnership on Forests.