World Health Day; 7th April 2021; Time to Reconcile Environmental Challenges with Healthcare

World Health Organization (WHO) announced 7th April as the World Health Day in the year 1948. The day is celebrated every year under the sponsorship of WHO. It is celebrated to create awareness and worldwide attention to a specific health theme, highlighting a priority area of concern for the World Health Organization. The theme for the present year is Building a fairer, healthier world.

 Over the past years, it has brought to light important health issues such as mental health, maternal and child care, and climate change. The celebration is marked by activities that extend beyond the day itself and serves as an opportunity to focus worldwide attention on important aspects of global health.

Climate change, habitat fragmentation, land-use changes, biodiversity loss, and illegal wildlife trade, among other factors, are often identified as possible reasons for zoonotic diseases and the emergence of animal-borne pandemics like the COVID-19. The health of the people and the health of the planet are interdependent, essentially the same thing, and both can thrive in equal measure. The pandemic has re-emphasized the need for making peace with nature.

NCCF upholds the view that conservation challenges during COVID-19, which may perhaps continue for a longer time,  call for adopting sustainable lifestyles, responsible consumerism, reverse migration to villages and the hills, decentralized governance and economy; high priority to MSMEs, including wood-based industries under Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan (Self Reliant India), green growth; focus on climate change mitigation, biodiversity conservation, land restoration, nature-based solutions and overall prudent management of natural resources.

NCCF has been promoting sustainable management of natural resources, through certification as an effective tool of management. NCCFs sustainability certification standards have great potential to contribute to achieving SDG goals, sustainable forest management, and our international commitments for climate justice, biodiversity conservation, and land restoration. Certification of natural resources may contribute in a small way to keep at bay such pandemics in future

On this World Health Day, let us pledge to restore the health of the planet by preserving our environment, forests, and biodiversity.