International Mountain Day 2021: Know about the Date, Theme, History, Significance and Key Facts here
International Mountain Day 2021: The day was designated by the United Nations General Assembly to celebrate International Mountain Day on 11 December. According to the UN, "Mountain host about half of the world's biodiversity hotspots and 30% of all key Biodiversity Areas."
More than half of humanity's everyday life relies on mountain freshwater. 80% of the world's food is supplied by the 20 plant species and six of them are originated and have been diversified in mountains namely maize, potatoes, barley, sorghum, tomatoes, and apples.
International Mountain Day raises awareness about the threats they face. Their conservation is the key factor for sustainable development and is part of Goal 15 of the SDGs. Due to climate change and overexploitation, mountains are under threat. The conservation of mountains is a crucial factor.
Mountains are not only important for inhabitants but also for millions of people living in lowlands. They are the sources of the world's major rivers and also play a crucial role in the water cycle.
This day also focuses on the opportunities and on the development of mountains. It also educates people in understanding the role of mountains in the environment and their impact on life. It is celebrated every year with a particular theme.
International Mountain Day (IMD) 2021: Theme
The theme of International Mountain Day 2021 is "Sustainable mountain tourism." The theme focuses on developing additional and alternative livelihood options and promoting poverty alleviation, social inclusion, biodiversity conservation, etc. In this way, we can preserve our natural, cultural, and spiritual heritage. It will help in promoting local crafts and high-value products, and also celebrate several traditional practices like local festivals.
The theme of International Mountain Day 2020 was "Mountain biodiversity". This year's theme focuses on the rich biodiversity of mountains and the threats they face. No doubt their unique topography, compressed climatic zones, and isolation have created the conditions for a wide spectrum of life forms.
The theme of International Mountain Day 2019 was "Mountains matter for Youth". The theme focuses on young youth so that they can come forward as active agents of change and as the future leads of tomorrow. It is necessary to educate children and people that mountains provide fresh water, clean energy, food, and recreation.
International Mountain Day (IMD): History
The formation of International Mountain Day history dates back to 1992 when Agenda 21 "Managing Fragile Ecosystems: Sustainable Mountain Development" of Chapter 13 was adopted at the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development. No doubt, it put a milestone in the history of mountain development. By seeing the increasing attention towards the importance of mountains, the UN General Assembly declared in 2002 the UN International Year of Mountains and designated 11 December as International Mountain Day from 2003 onwards. Therefore we can say that the first time International Mountain Day was celebrated on 11 December 2003. Every year it is celebrated with a particular theme.
International Mountain Day (IMD): Celebrations
It is celebrated in various ways. On this day various forums, hand-on-activities, presentations, student debate, photo, art competitions, hikes, and events targeted specific groups are organised. You can also join the conversation on social media using the #MountainsMatter hashtag. You can also write about your planning for the event on International Mountain Day at info-IMD@fao.org so that it can be published on the website of International Mountain Day. You can also share your experience in mountain life, photos of your favourite mountain, moments, etc with your friends, relatives, etc.
Importance of Mountains
Mountains are the most beautiful structures of nature, majestic, solid that stand against the sky and feel like that they can catch the entire countrysides in their shadow. They are the sources of recreation and resource. They are the source of agriculture, provide ample space in the slopes for production.
- Mountains play an important role in the water cycle.
- The precipitation of snow in the mountains remains and is stored in the mountains until it melts in the spring and summer season and provides essential water for settlements, agriculture, and industries downstream.
- In fact, in the semi-arid and arid regions, around 90% of the river comes from the mountains.
- In temperate Europe, the Alps that occupy around 11% of the area of the Rhine river basin supply 31% of the annual flow and in summer more than 50%.
- Water coming from the mountains is also the source of hydroelectric power.
- The fuel of wood in developing countries is the predominant source of energy in mountain settlements and is also essential whether as wood or charcoal to many people living in urban lowlands and on the plains.
- Mountain wood is also used in several ways.
- The ecosystems of the mountain play an important role in biological diversity etc.
Therefore, International Mountain Day is celebrated every year on 11 December to raise awareness and focus on the importance of Mountains not only for our lives but also for inhabitants, the ecosystem, and the environment.
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