‘World Environment Day’ (WED) is observed on 5th of June each year and calls for protecting our natural surroundings. The day, celebrated under the ambit of United Nations Environment Programme marks an occasion to raise awareness on the challenges facing our environment such as pollution, illegal wildlife trade, sustainable consumption, rising sea levels and food security.
This year’s theme for the WED is ‘Solutions to Plastic Pollution’. WED-2023 will showcase how countries, businesses and individuals are learning to use material more sustainably, offering hope that one day, plastic pollution will be history.
This is a timely call, since the world is being inundated by plastic. More than 400 million tonnes of plastic is produced every year, half of which is designed to be used only once. Of that, less than 10% is recycled. An estimated 19-23 million tonnes end up in lakes, rivers and seas. Today, plastic clog our landfills, leaches into the ocean and is combusted into toxic smoke, making it one of the gravest threats to the planet. In addition, microplastics find their way into the food we eat, the water we drink and the air we breathe. Many plastic products contain hazardous additives, which pose a serious threat to our health.
Pakistan Navy celebrates WED to highlight the significance of environment and to promote awareness amongst personnel for mobilizing actions to stem detrimental effects of environmental degradation. PN has embarked on numerous measures ranging from collection of solid waste from harbour, establishment of Reedbed plants in all areas under its jurisdiction and extensive tree plantation campaigns.
PN also continues to sensitize concerned Government and non-Government organizations and departments to take effective measures against marine pollution. While awareness is deemed a vital factor, Field Commands and PN Units inculcate a sense of responsibility with practical steps amongst all to save and preserve our environment. I expect all under Command to launch dedicated efforts to make these activities worthwhile and result-oriented.
On this day, let us reaffirm our commitment and resolve to ensure a cleaner and safer environment which directly affects our quality of life. I would also urge the industrial community to embrace best practices and principles to synergize our efforts towards, practical ‘Solutions to Plastic Pollution’.