The priceless value of wildlife
Wild animals and wild plants, in addition to their intrinsic value, contribute to the ecological, genetic, social, economic, scientific, educational, cultural, recreational and aesthetic aspects of human well-being and sustainable development.
World Wildlife Day gives us the opportunity to celebrate the beauty and variety of wild flora and fauna, as well as to raise awareness of the myriad benefits that the conservation of these life forms has for humanity. The celebration of this day also reminds us of the urgent need to combat crimes against the environment and the decline of species caused by human activity, which have far-reaching negative consequences in the economic, environmental and social fields. This is the reason why Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 15 focuses on halting the loss of biodiversity.
Underwater life: for people and the planet
This 2019 campaign, “Underwater life: for people and the planet”, is closely aligned with Goal 14 of Sustainable Development (“conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development”) with a special focus on the conservation and sustainable use of marine wildlife.
The ocean contains nearly 200,000 identified species, but there are actually millions of species. More than three billion people depend on marine and coastal biological diversity for their livelihoods. Marine fauna has been the livelihood for civilization and development for millennia, providing us with food and materials for crafts and construction, as well as enriching our lives from a cultural, spiritual and leisure point of view.
The ability of marine life to continue to provide humanity with all of this is increasingly complicated, as our oceans and the species that live in them are being threatened by various hazards. Among others, overexploitation, especially unsustainable fishing and other practices of extraction of marine species, but also other great threats such as the effects of climate change, marine pollution and habitat destruction. This has a strong impact not only under the sea, but on the lives and livelihoods of those who depend on the services of marine ecosystems, particularly women and men in coastal communities.
Find out more about marine species, their characteristics and habitats, the threats they face and find out how you can contribute to their conservation.
Share what you learn, especially with children and young people. They will be the future leaders in wildlife conservation and they deserve a future in which humanity shares the planet and lives in harmony with wild species. Here are posters and other outreach materials available in various languages to help you spread the word about this campaign.
Use social networks to spread the message using the tags # DíaDeLaLidaSilvestre, #LaVidaSubacuática and #EspeciesMarinas.
The Secretariat of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) and the Jackson Hole Film Festival are collaborating again to organize a film festival, this time on marine species. The winning videos will help raise global awareness of the importance of underwater life.