ODVV Statement for World Environment Day
World Environment Day is a day which has been named by the United Nations to raise public awareness of the protection and preservation of the environment, and encourage politicians to make decisions for confronting the destruction of the environment and animal species.
Unfortunately people continually have threatened the natural process of the environment, either intentionally or unintentionally. Many trees are chopped down on a daily basis. Waters are wasted and polluted, natural forests are destroyed, many animal and plant species are on the brink of extinction, and hundreds more have gone extinct due to the loss of their habitat, the Ozone Layer is threatened with destruction and global warming is a serious threat.
Industrial activities, particularly in industrial and powerful countries, have escalated the environmental and climate change crises, such as global warming, and the concern increases when an industrial country like the United States of America very easily leaves the Paris Climate Agreement, and puts priority on its economic interests above the right to a clean environment for all the occupants of planet Earth. This kind of irresponsible attitude towards global crises, has facilitated great calamities in violation of human rights related to the environment.
In Iran, the escalation of climate change has had destructive effects on the country. Big reductions in rain and snow fall in Iran and drought are serious crises which can result in conflicts and violence in the region. Also air pollution in big cities and the dust problems due to extensive drought and improper dam constructions in some neighbouring countries must also be added to the list of environmental problems that threaten the right to life and health of Iranians, and have destructive impacts on the country’s economy and agriculture. The rise in environmental issues in the recent years, necessitates attention to these issues more prominent than before.
Furthermore, the environmental destruction of wars must also not be forgotten. Wars have been raging in the Middle East for years, and the devastations caused by the wars in Yemen, Syria and Iraq have inflicted irreversible damages to the region’s ecosystem. Active mines, construction of bridges and dams on rivers and the migration paths of fishes, construction of bases around delicate ecosystems, pollution of ponds and water ecosystems, oil pollution etc. are some of the examples of the destruction of the environment as a result of regional wars.
The Organization for Defending Victims of Violence (ODVV) believes that the protection of nature, promotion of human dignity and realisation of security and justice, the development and growth of future generations are closely linked to one of the most important MDGs, i.e. protection of the environment and environmental issues, and any form of damage and destruction of nature, affects the enjoyment of one of the most vital aspects of human rights.
We believe that the theme of this year’s World Environment Day, “Beat Plastic Pollution” must be taken very seriously. This issue in fact draws the attention of all to the matter as to how we can help reduce the heavy load of plastic pollution in our daily lives. Making changes by all people, organizations and governments through cooperation with each other to fight the big environmental challenges of our time.
The ODVV hopes that with further international and regional cooperation, chances for the protection of the environment and reduction of threats against it will come about. Through raising public awareness, the commitment of governments towards the protection and preservation of the environment, and through actions such as optimisation of fuel and energy, increasing green spaces and prevention of destruction of forests, recycling and the use of alternative sources of energy such as wind and solar energy, correcting agricultural and irrigation methods, using new methods can all control the destruction of the environment and its negative effects on the life of Mankind.