Millions of people around the world celebrated connection they have with Nature on 5th June, 2017 for World Environmental Day (WED). The celebration remains to be the biggest annual event which takes place every 5th June and brings together communities; government; and key actors to take and put forward affirmative actions of safeguarding our planet from human activities.
This year (2017) the world celebrated the forty fifth (45) WED since its inception in 1972. Ever since 1987 WED has been hosted by different countries, where the official global celebrations take place. Canada was the host country for this year and they got to choose the theme “Connecting People to Nature” which was the center of celebrations around the World. The theme was appealing to us to be concerned on how we use nature and call upon appreciating its beauty and its importance.
Human share and depend on nature in his daily activities. The value of nature has already been seen in storage of greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide and methane; farmers and fisher-folk harness nature on land and under water to provide us with food; but also scientists develop medicines using genetic material drawn from the millions of species that make up Earth’s astounding biological diversity. People around the world spend every working day connecting with nature. The livelihood activities of the rural and urban people in developing countries depend much on nature, hence, they become the first one to suffer with the impacts resulted from climate change and degradation of ecosystem. Therefore we have to protect nature and our environment by promoting and investing in sustainable utilization of our natural resources in our daily lives and investing in low emission development.
At National level the commemoration was held at Butiama, Mara Region on 04th June, 2017 to honor father of the nation (The late Mwl. Julius Kambarage Nyerere) and celebrates his legacy by recognizing his contribution on conservation of environment and nature. The guest of honor was the Vice President of United Republic of Tanzania Her Excellence, Hon. Samia Suluhu Hassan. The national theme was “Environmental conservation is a cornerstone to sustainable industrial development in Tanzania" (in Swahili: Hifadhi ya Mazingira: Muhimili Kwa Tanzania Ya Viwanda). Stakeholders and the government used the symposium to recommend and proclaim bold and affirmative initiatives to safeguard Tanzania environment and our planet from human activities.
The week of Actions toward Commemoration of World Environmental Day
The commemoration week commenced on 1st -4th June with public outreach events took place all over Tanzania. For the sake of appreciating the Beauty and Nature the Vice President Office -Division of Environment (VPO-DoE) in collaboration with responsible Ministry for Natural Resource offered a complimentary free entrance to the National Parks and Games from 1st -04th June, 2017 to visit the national parks to enjoy and appreciate beauty and importance of Nature.
On 3rd -4th June, 2017 VPO-DoE held a National symposium at Butiama where participants got an opportunity to discuss the selected topic and banning issues regarding climate change and environmental conservation in Tanzania and beyond.
While the symposium was taking place at Butiama on the same dates 3rd and 4th June, 2017 FORUMCC in collaboration FEMINA HIP; NipeFagio; Jielimishe Kwanza; and UN Environment took part to the Dar Es Salaam World Environment Day Festival which was held at Kijitonyama Posta Grounds for two days with the theme "Connecting people to Nature- Be Cool, Clean and Green”. Swedish ambassador to Tanzania Ms. Katarina Rangnitt was the guest of honor. During her remarks she pointed out that, "Climate change is a fact and science with empirical evidence, climate change has already threatened our livelihood as we can all see the change of rainfall patterns and floods in some parts of Tanzania. There are a lot of things degrading our precious environment; we commend the government of Tanzania to advocate for plastic ban but still we cannot let our beautiful beach and see be harmed by garbage’s since the ocean is not a damp. “In this festival let us hold the legacy of the Father of the Nation the late Mwl. Julius K. Nyerere towards environmental conservation". She added.
During the two days of the festival FORUMCC established the booths and demonstrated the products and activities undertaken by the organization where people visited and learnt about climate change and Environmental issues in Tanzania and beyond. A total of about 250 people visited the booths and more than 500 posters and other publications were distributed.
FazalIssa and Jonathan Sawaya highlighting some issues to student and others who got chance to visit the FORUMCC’s booths
Earlier morning of 3rd June, 2017 FORUMCC participated on the general cleanness at Sea view and Aga Khan Shoreline organized together with Ilala Municipal Council (IMC) where about 150 people participated the cleanness. This event was intended to clean the environment for the sake of beautifying and save as a wakeup call around the World to be aware on the importance of general cleanness but also improving waste management at so as not to pollute the “Nature”.
Commemoration of World Environmental Day
On 5th June, 2017 Dar Es Salaam Region celebrated WED at MnaziMmoja Ground. The Commemoration was organized by IMC in collaboration with FORUMCC and other stakeholders. The celebration began with demonstration from Posta (near Askari Monument) with several groups of participants from government, private sectors and civil society organizations to MnaziMmoja ground. FORUMCC was in the frontline of the demonstration where about 500 people participated.
Jackson Massawe with pupils from Dar Es Salaam International Academy matching toward MnaziMmoja grounds
Thereafter, Honorable Sophia Mjema (Ilala District Commissioner) who was the guest of honor received the demonstration at MnaziMmoja grounds. On her remarks she insisted on the importance of conserving our environment as there is no other planet where we can go and live. “People are degrading the environment as if there’s other place we can go and live”. She said. The rate of environmental degradation in Tanzania is mounting at alarming rate. We have seen the incidence of burning forest; cultivating near the water sources; discharging water; and inappropriate way of handling waste. The government and stakeholder are really looking on the affirmative measures will lessen these challenge by establishing good synergy between the balance of economic development and conservation our planet and Nature.
Honorable Sophia Mjema addressing the audience during commemoration of WED at MnazMmoja Grounds
On her conclusion she urged the audience and all Tanzanian to continue with behavior of planting trees every year but also to stop all human activities near the water sources; make sure we use waste in a way that benefit us. “I have seen some of countries in the World they use waste to generate energy and fertilizer. I think it’s something which we are capable of doing”.
After that she got an opportunity to visit exhibition and one of the booths she visited was the FORUMCC’s booths. We explained to her on different initiatives organization is undertaken in supporting the government on addressing the impacts of climate change in Tanzania and beyond. We gave her a gift of Guideline Tool kit of integrating Climate Change Adaptation into Plans and Budget at national and local level. She promised us to read it and use the recommendations proposed in the tool Kit.
Call from FORUMCC: We take this opportunity to suggest about environmental protection and conservation not only to be reminded and insisted during the commemorations of World Environment Day but it should be an everyday routine to every one of us to protect and conserve our mother Earth from environmental destruction and we should do more against the climate change and the global warming, because the impacts of climate change are at an alarming rate.
The commemoration was held 04th June, 2017 Sunday instead of 05th June Monday to give opportunity for many people to participate fully in the event.