Forests are integral to our lives in complex ways that we are only beginning to understand. From reducing stress to carbon sequestering and climate regulation, they play a large role in our health and our planet’s health.
March 21 is the International Day of Forests and this year’s theme centers on education ensuring that people – kids, policymakers, funders, and people who live in communities near forests – know the value of forests and why it is important to protect them.
In the campaign promoting celebration of the International Day of Forests, through powerful messages and examples, the United Nations encourages the global community to learn to love our planet’s forests. Below we are underscoring some of them through the stories that recently appeared on the GEF blog and Medium.
Understanding our forests and keeping them healthy is crucial for our future. Forests will be more important than ever as the world population climbs to 8.5 billion by 2030. – International Day of Forests 2019, UN Key Message.
Forests cover around one-third of the earth's land surface. Forests maintain biodiversity, protect land and water resources, and play a significant role in climate change mitigation. Rapid development and competing land uses, particularly for farming and grazing lands, commercial plantations, and infrastructure expansion, have cut wide swaths through the world’s forests.