ISLAMABAD, Dec 10 (APP):International Mountain Day, themed “Restoring Mountain Ecosystems,” will be observed on Monday across the country and around the world to highlight the significance of the mountains and their people’s lifestyles.
According to details, the United Nations General Assembly nominated December 11 as “International Mountain Day” in 2002. However, beyond their aesthetics, mountains play a crucial role in our planet’s well-being, impacting global ecosystems, climate, and communities.
This theme was selected to fully include mountains in the UN decade on ecosystem restoration 2021–2030, co-led by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN and the UN Environment Programme. The decade is an opportunity to draw together political support, scientific research, and financial resources to significantly scale up restoration and prevent further degradation of mountain ecosystems.
It is pertinent to mention here that mountains cover around 27 percent of the Earth’s land surface and host about half of the world’s biodiversity hotspots. The mountains are home to an extraordinary range of plants and animals and many culturally diverse communities with different languages and traditions. From climate regulation and water provisioning services to soil maintenance and conservation, mountains are key to our lives and livelihoods.
According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, up to 84 percent of endemic mountain species are at risk of extinction, while populations of a range of other mountain plant and animal species are projected to decline and face extinction.
The recent biodiversity agreement of the 2022 United Nations Biodiversity Conference, which pledges to protect 30 percent of the Earth’s lands, oceans, coastal areas, and inland waters by 2030, provides an impetus to revive and protect mountain landscapes.