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Be a biodiversity hero

Jun 05. 2017
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By The Nation

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World Environment Day is celebrated every June 5 to bring attention to environmental problems such as illegal wildlife trade, climate change, habitat degradation, biodiversity loss, and many other challenges.

“The celebration of this day provides us with an opportunity to broaden the basis for an enlightened opinion and responsible conduct by individuals, enterprises and communities in preserving and enhancing the environment,” reads a statement by the United Nations. 

Since it began in 1972, citizens from all over have launched thousands of campaigns to encourage others to contribute in implementing positive environmental action. This year’s theme, ‘Connecting People to Nature,’ invites people to think how they are part of nature and how intimately they depend on it.

“We at the ASEAN Centre for Biodiversity join people everywhere in celebrating World Environment Day. We call on everyone to look at the interconnectedness among humans, plants, animals, and other species in the web of life, and think of ways to be part of the solution in addressing environmental challenges,” said ACB executive director Roberto V Oliva.

 According to ACB, there are a number of ways by which people can connect with nature. “Be a biodiversity hero by knowing more about the web of life and the hundreds of things you can do to conserve biodiversity. Plant a tree. Initiate a clean-up activity. Start a simple biodiversity education activity in your community. Be a citizen volunteer in an environment protection group. Every step – big or small, counts. We can be biodiversity heroes not only during World Environment Day, but every day,” Oliva said,.

On August 7, Asean will introduce 10 Asean Biodiversity Heroes to represent Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam. The Asean Biodiversity Heroes are outstanding individuals from the Asean region who not only have connected with nature, but also have contributed significantly to biodiversity conservation and advocacy efforts in their respective countries.

The Asean Biodiversity Heroes event recognises outstanding individuals from the Asean Member States who have contributed significantly to biodiversity conservation and advocacy efforts in their respective countries and the region. The Heroes will be the faces of biodiversity conservation in the Asean region – individuals that people can identify with and will inspire others to take action for biodiversity in their own spheres of influence.

For more information, visit To learn more about the Asean Biodiversity Heroes, log on to


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