World Environment Day 2012

Event date: 
2012-06-05 (All day)


Introduction and background


By Resolution 2994 of 15 December 1972, the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) designated 5 June as World Environment Day, to deepen public awareness of the need to preserve and enhance the environment. This date was chosen because it was the opening day of the United Nations Conference on the Human Environment (Stockholm, 1972), which resulted in the establishment of the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP).
Twenty years later, on that date, the UN General Assembly convened the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) in Rio de Janeiro, where nations came together to take the decisions needed to rekindle the hopes of the 1972 Conference
to take up the challenges of a viable and equitable balance between environment and development, and
to promote a sustainable future for the earth and its people.
UNEP chooses a theme each year, which forms part of the theme chosen by the National Department of Environment Affairs.
The celbration of World Environment Day conincides with the June National Environment Month dedicated to the environment. Both National Environment Month and World Environment Day will be celebrated under the UN approved theme for the celebration of the World Environment Day.

Theme:"Green Economy: Does it Include You?"

For the purposes of the Green Economy Initiative, UNEP has developed a working definition of a green economy as one that results in improved human well-being and social equity, while significantly reducing environmental risks and ecological scarcities. In its simplest expression, a green economy can be thought of as one which is low carbon, resource efficient and socially inclusive.

South Africa’s celebration


The South African Weather Service (SAWS) is set to celebrate World Meteorological Day at the Phuthaditjhaba Multi-Purpose Centre in QwaQwa, Free State on Monday, 23 March 2015.

The event is set to be co-hosted by the Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA), SAWS and Maluti-A-Phofung local municipality. The Deputy Minister of Environmental Affairs, Ms. Barbara Thomson will lead the events and is expected to engage with 1000 attendees. This will include the three spheres of government, disaster management structures, surrounding community leaders and members, the business community, interest groups and 20 public schools.


2015 Theme and purpose of the day


The theme for this year, “Climate knowledge for climate action,” provides an opportunity to take stock of the climate knowledge built in the last decades as an essential base to support the path towards more ambitious action to address climate change and climate variability.

The purpose of the day is to create weather awareness and enhance the learners’ knowledge on weather and climate. In this respect, three schools will participate in a competition in the form of seven-minute presentations on climate change. The schools stand a chance to win fantastic prizes from SAWS, DEA and the broadcast media partner, OVHD.

The Deputy Minister Environmental Affairs, Free State MEC for Economic Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs; Thabo Mofutsanyane District Mayor and the Maluti-a-Phofong Executive Mayor will lend their public profiles to the day and further act as judges in the competition.

The Free State province has recently experienced severe weather conditions, ranging from droughts and heavy rains to dust storms. There is thus, a dire need to reach out to communities in this province particularly those affected by severe weather events in order to educate them on precautions they can take during these events as well as the interventions by SAWS to ensure the safety of life and property.

The event will ensure that more people become aware of the work of SAWS as the national provider of weather and climate-related information, technological advancements and the various careers and bursary opportunities available for the youth at the state-owned entity.


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