In Brief: World Wildlife Day
- The UN World Wildlife Day is being celebrated on 3rd March every year since 2013, to raise awareness of the world’s wild animals and plants.
- In 2013, it was first proclaimed by a United Nations General Assembly resolution.
- 3rd March is chosen as World Wildlife Day because it was on this date that the CITES convention was signed in 1973.
- CITES Secretariat, Geneva is the designated facilitator for the global observance of World Wildlife Day.
In Focus: World Wildlife Day 2019
- Theme: ‘Life below water: for people and planet’
- This is the first time that the World Wildlife Day has focused on ‘marine species’.
- It is in line with SDG 14, ‘Life below water’.
Marine Wildlife: A backgrounder
- Marine Wildlife identified till date constitutes about 200,000 species with millions more awaiting to be discovered.
- The market value of marine and coastal resources is estimated at US$3 trillion per year, about 5% of global GDP.
- Globally, about 3 billion people are dependent on marine and coastal resources for their livelihoods.
- This is despite the fact that coastal zones make up just 4% of the earth’s total land area and 11% of the world’s oceans.
Significance of Marine wildlife
Threats to Marine Wildlife
About 40% of the ocean is affected by various threats including
- Over exploitation of marine species
- Loss of coastal habitats
- Climate change
Note: In an earlier article we have extensively covered Marine Plastic Pollution: