As global host to World Environment Day 2018, India launched its official countdown to June 5 with a historic slate of activities ranging from nationwide clean-ups, to single-use plastic bans across States, Universities and National Parks.
“Celebrations in India for World Environment Day are being executed on a large scale, from 24 rivers and beach clean-ups respectively to national parks and reserves going plastic free. The scale at which these activities are being carried out is unprecedented and we are proud to showcase our environmental leadership to the world,” said Dr. Harsh Vardhan, Minister of Environment, Forest and Climate Change at the curtain raiser.
At a press conference in New Delhi, government officials outlined plans from communities large and small aimed at beating plastic pollution through civic engagement and celebration. With support from an inspiring cross section of Indian society, ranging from cricket pitches to board rooms, the scope of efforts in India represent an unprecedented national commitment to this global cause, with the promise to make this the largest and most substantial World Environment Day ever.
“India has demonstrated the magnitude of what is possible when leaders, individuals and businesses come together to tackle a challenge – even one as great as plastic pollution,” said Erik Solheim, Head of UN Environment. “The momentum for World Environment Day on June 5 is picking up, and all across India we are witnessing exactly the kind of global leadership we need to save our planet from the rising tide of plastic pollution.”
The press conference marked the launch of a 10-day countdown to World Environment Day on June 5.
The countdown culminates with the opening of the World Environment Day Exhibition in New Delhi on June 2,showcasing green innovations and programs from every corner of the country. Plenaries on plastic pollution, marine litter and, new plastic economy, extended producer responsibility and many others are also being organized. Environment experts, thinkers, corporates, industries and multinational companies are participating for a truly engaging global dialogue on environmental challenges. State environment ministers will also meet to discuss the way forward on India’s green future and the global push to beat plastic pollution.
And finally, on June 5, Prime Minister Modi will visit the exhibition and make a global call to action, outlining India’s commitments in the battle to beat plastic pollution.
The events highlight India’s leadership of a movement for a simple yet ambitious goal: Inspire the world to beat plastic pollution. Complimenting this nationwide effort, are global initiatives taking place in in hundreds of countries, mobilizing dozens of partners and connecting millions of supporters worldwide.
It’s all part of an unprecedented effort that invites us to consider how we can make changes in our everyday lives to reduce the heavy burden of plastic pollution on our natural places, our wildlife and our own health.
Ranging from record-breaking beach cleanups to inspiring art installations the sprint to World Environment Day, launched here today will bring together interests from all parts of the globe and all sectors of society for this common cause.