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Earth Hour Special Edition

Let’s Build Back Nature!

Close your eyes and imagine what an ideal life could be 20 years from now. What do you see? Watch this video to hear what kids like you think about the future.

Have you signed up for Earth Hour? On 26 March at 8.30 p.m., in over 190 countries, people will switch off their lights and iconic buildings will go dark in a show of solidarity for people and the planet. This year’s Earth Hour theme, ‘Shape Our Future,’ is particularly relevant as world leaders are due to meet in China at the 15th Conference of the Parties to the UN Convention on Biological Diversity (UN CBD COP15) to discuss a new 10-year agreement for nature. With the planet’s biodiversity in severe decline, we need our leaders to urgently commit to a clear goal for nature.

In this special Earth Hour edition of Nature Nuggets, we look at what the Global Goal for Nature means and explore how we can help build back nature.

Why we need a global goal for nature
Our planet faces three major challenges—nature loss (or biodiversity loss), climate change, and inequitable (or unequal) development. We have in place the climate goal of “net zero” by 2050, and Sustainable Development Goals to protect the Earth and improve the lives of people everywhere. We need a similar goal for nature to ensure we have the best future possible!

Turning nature positive

The Global Goal for Nature, supported by WWF and other environmental organisations, would commit governments to working to stop and reverse biodiversity loss and build a nature positive world by 2030 so that there is more nature in 2030 than there was in 2020. Further, nature should be fully recovered by 2050 so that it can support all life and future generations and can also combat climate change.

Watch this video to see how a nature positive world would benefit us.

What you can do

There’s a lot you can do to help shape a nature positive future!

  • Educate yourself on nature, conservation, and local biodiversity in your area.
  • Encourage local biodiversity by growing a wildlife-friendly garden with native plants. Set up insect hotels, bird baths, and feeders with healthy foods.
  • Make environmentally conscious choices in your everyday life. For example, opt for sustainably harvested seafood, switch to a plant-based diet, or choose products that are eco-friendly and sustainably sourced.
  • Reduce your waste and compost kitchen waste to return nutrients to nature.
  • Speak up for nature. Advocate for nature positive action from local authorities, governments, businesses, and communities.

So, sign up for Earth Hour 2022, show decision-makers that you want urgent action for nature, and help Shape Our Future!

Common Name: Chiru

Scientific Name: Pantholops hodgsonii

The chiru, also called the Tibetan antelope, lives on the high mountain steppes and semi-desert of the Tibetan Plateau in China. Every summer, female chiru migrate 200 to 300 km to give birth in traditional birthing grounds. Watch this video on the chirus’ migration.

The world’s finest and most expensive wool, shahtoosh, is produced from the chiru’s fleece. In 1979, international trade in shahtoosh was declared prohibited. But continued poaching led to the chiru’s population declining from over a million to approximately 70,000 animals.

Conservation efforts improved the numbers of chiru in the wild and the species’ Red List status was upgraded from ‘endangered’ to ‘near threatened.’ However, poaching, habitat loss, competition with domestic livestock over rangeland, and other challenges continue to threaten this graceful animal.

Time to check your Nature Quotient!

Choose the correct statements.

  1. Both male and female chiru have horns.
  2. Male chiru have horns but the females are hornless.
  3. Both male and female chiru have antlers.
  4. Male chiru have antlers only during the breeding season.

Answer to be revealed in our next edition!

Previous edition answer: The correct answer is c. The relationship between bluestreak wrasses and their clients is an example of mutualism as both benefit from the interaction. The clients get rid of parasites and dead tissue thanks to the wrasses, and the wrasses, in turn, get a good meal!

Congratulations to everyone who guessed it right!

This Earth Hour, think about how you can go beyond the hour to make a difference. Why not lead by example, like Aarna Wadhawan? Thirteen-year-old Aarna is the President of the Youth Environmentalists Club. With her Environmentalist Army, she has planted 6,500 trees. Her work has been featured by UNESCO MGIEP for World Kindness Day 2021 and she received the Kind Student Award 2021 from PETA India.She invented a solar-powered UV lamp for the sterilization of pathological laboratories and operation theatres in rural areas that lack electricity.For her efforts, Aarna received an invitation to National Youth Day 2022 from Mr. Bhupender Yadav, Union Minister of Environment, Forest, and Climate Change. Isn’t that inspiring?

More exciting stuff this Earth Hour! WWF India is launching Season 2 of our podcast series Panda Speaks—How to Train Your Grownups! Our young hosts, Ananya and Shivam, will share how you can get your grownup to listen to you about important environmental issues and take action for nature. So, tune in to Episode 1 “Switch Off” this Earth Hour! Click here: https://linktr.ee/WWF_India

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