17 June: World Day to Combat Desertification
World Day to Combat Desertification was observed across the world on 17 June 2013. The theme of 2013 World Day to Combat Desertification was drought and water scarcity.
Objective of World Day to Combat Desertification
The objective of 2013 World Day to Combat Desertification is creation of awareness regarding risks of water scarcity as well as drought in drylands as well as beyond that. The objective of the day was to call attention of people towards importance of sustaining healthy soils as the part of Rio+20 agenda and post-2015 sustainable development agenda.
Apart from this, the goal of this day was to attract attention of people to take actions towards promotion of preparedness as well as flexibility towards water scarcity, drought and desertification.
Theme and Slogan of 2013 World Day to Combat Desertification
The theme of 2013 World Day to Combat Desertification was drought and water scarcity. The slogan of 2013 World Day to Combat Desertification was Don’t let our future dry up. The slogan was embodiment of message that people are responsible for land conservation as well as water conservation, apart from their sustainable use.
Important facts related to World Day to Combat Desertification
Out of all the water available on Earth, merely 2.5 percent is freshwater. Out of this available freshwater, the overall usable supply of freshwater meant for humans and ecosystem is even less than 1 percent. With the increasing demand of water, the pressure on supply of freshwater increases which results in water scarcity.
Water scarcity is particularly more in the drylands. Intensification of the scarcity of freshwater causes more pressure in the drylands. The need of every person for water for the purpose of well-being and sustainable development every year is at least 2000 cubic metres, on an average. However, in reality, people in the drylands get merely 1300 cubic metres out of this.
United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD)
Desertification, loss of the biodiversity as well as climate change were the major challenges that were identified during the 1992 Rio Earth Summit.
UNCCD was established in the year 1994. It is the only legally binding international agreement which links development as well as environment to the sustainable land management.
UNCCD addresses the arid, semi-arid as well as the dry sub-humid areas (all of which are also called the drylands), are the vulnerable ecosystems.