Aimed at conservation and recovery of the key species of the wild fauna and flora, the United Nations World Wildlife Day 2022 will be observed as the day of “Recovering key species for ecosystem restoration”.
The Secretariat of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) announced on November 15 the theme of the United Nations World Wildlife Day 2022: “Recovering key species for ecosystem restoration”.
MESSAGE AND THEME
Leading up to the year when the post 2020 Global Biodiversity Framework is expected to be adopted, drawing attention to the status of some of the most critically endangered species of wild fauna and flora and their role in ecosystems will send a powerful message for urgent commitment, an official statement said.
The theme will also highlight the impact of conservation efforts and promote best practice examples where species were brought back from the brink, and it will drive discussions towards imagining and implementing new solutions to conserve and sustainably use others, CITES said.
The World Wildlife Day 2022 aims at raising awareness of the endangered and critically endangered wildlife, and highlighting the power of conservation efforts seeking to reverse their fate.
The International Union for Conservation of Nature’s Red List of Threatened Species records over 8,400 species of wild fauna and flora as critically endangered. It recorded that close to 30,000 more are endangered or vulnerable. Based on these estimates, it is suggested that over a million species are threatened with extinction.
CITES notes that continued loss of species and degradation of habitats and ecosystems threatened humanity as a whole, as people everywhere rely on wildlife and biodiversity-based resources to meet all their needs, from food, medicines and health to fuel, housing, and clothing.
CHARTING A PATH
Noting that biodiversity loss was an existential threat to people and planet, CITES Secretary-General Ivonne Higuero said that the continued loss of wildlife species threatened to undermine entire ecosystems and puts into peril the well-being of all who rely on them. She also said that it was inevitable that humans have the power to change course and restore threatened species and their habitats. “With the theme of “Recovering key species for ecosystem restoration”, we wish to inspire action towards reversing the fate of key species of animals and plants. It is our hope that World Wildlife Day will help chart a path towards a sustainable future, with the goal of living in harmony with nature. Ultimately, we hope to spur on the needed political will to adopt a robust post 2020 Global Biodiversity Framework and secure our common future,” she said.
The World Wildlife Day 2022 also aims to support all ongoing efforts towards the accomplishment of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), especially Goals 1 (No Poverty), 2 (Zero hunger) 12 (Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns), 13 (Climate Action) 14 (Life Below Water) and 15 (Life on Land) as biodiversity and healthy ecosystems are a foundation for sustainable development.
In line with the UN General Assembly Resolution proclaiming World Wildlife Day, the CITES Secretariat called on all member States and organizations of the United Nations system and other global, regional and sub-regional organizations, non-governmental organizations and all interested individuals, to:
- observe and raise awareness of the theme for World Wildlife Day 2021;
- involve indigenous peoples and rural and local communities with experience and knowledge in the use and conservation of vulnerable species and ecosystems in all World Wildlife Day events and celebrations;
- associate the celebrations with major national and international conservation events;
- build collaborative partnerships;
- make use of the World Wildlife Day logos as widely as possible.
The United Nations General Assembly on 20 December 2013 proclaimed 3 March, the international day for the adoption of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) as World Wildlife Day.
WHYNEED TO RESTORE
It is a known fact that wild life has seen a drastic fall in numbers over the years. Reports say that since 1970s, populations of mammals, birds, fishes, amphibians and reptiles have dropped unimaginably by an average of 70 per cent. Moreover, few species such as tigers, rhinos, pangolins bears and elephants are under severe threat.