Zee Media Bureau
Every year United Nation celebrates March 21st as International Day of Forest to raise awareness about the importance of forest to the mankind.
Ever since its inception in 2013, this global celebration encourages all member states to organize local, national and international events related to forests. They also put forward the ways and measures to protect and prevent further depletion of forest reserve.
This year UN has decided to hold a joint celebration of International Day of Forest and World Water Day (which falls on March 22) and the combined theme of the event is "Forest and Water, Sustain Life and Livelihood".
This joint program will raise awareness about the interconnections of forests and water. The denser the forest reserve, the minimum are the chances of water scarcity.
One of the most crucial ecosystem on the earth, forests are the home of about 80% of the terrestrial species of animals, plants and insects. They are a rich source of shelter, job and security for many forest dependent communities.
Unfortunately, the green belt is depleting at an alarming rate with about 13 million hectares of forest disappearing annually. Aggressive deforestation has pushed the world on the verge of serious water crisis.
UN estimates that around 80% of the world's population are exposed to high levels of threat to water security.
In a message to the governments, businesses and civil societies on the eve of International Day of Forests, UN's Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon encourage them to adopt holistic policies and practices to protect, restore and sustain healthy forest for our common future.