Wangari Maathai/Africa Environment Day 2017
Paying tribute to the late Nobel Laureate’s legacy, in January 2012, the African Union (AU) adopted a decision calling for the joint celebrations of the African Environment Day and Wangari Maathai Day on 3rd March.
The Assembly/AU/Decision.406 (XVIII) recognizes her numerous achievements as the first Presiding Officer of AU-ECOSOCC, as an African Union Peace Ambassador, as Founder of the Green Belt Movement, as Goodwill Ambassador for the Congo Basin Forest, as UN Peace Messenger for Environment and Climate, and as UNEP Champion of the Earth.
The occasion symbolizes challenge and hope for Africa aiming to raise awareness on sustainable environmental management among all stakeholders at national, regional and continental levels. It also draws attention to the increasing environmental problems faced by the continent and to encourage the development of appropriate policies at national and regional levels and to enhance environmental sustainability.
World Wildlife Day is also celebrated on 3rd March as well. Pope Francis' words in Laudato Si’, remind us that “the earth’s resources are being plundered because of short-sighted approaches to the economy, commerce and production” [LS.32].