A woman working among solar pannels
Amurdavallee Ramasawmy, Central Electricity Board System Planning Engineer, at Henrietta Solar PV Farm, Mauritius, July 2020.
Photo:UNDP Mauritius/Stephane Bellerose

Only one Earth

In the universe are billions of galaxies,
In our galaxy are billions of planets,
But there is #OnlyOneEarth.
Let’s take care of it.

 

Earth faces a triple planetary emergency:

  • the climate is heating up too quickly for people and nature to adapt;
  • habitat loss and other pressures mean an estimated 1 million species are threatened with extinction;
  • pollution continues to poison our air, land and water.

The way out of this dilemma is to transform our economies and societies to make them inclusive, fair and more connected with nature. We must shift from harming the planet to healing it.

The good news is the solutions and the technology exist and are increasingly affordable.

#OnlyOneEarth is the campaign for World Environment Day 2022. It calls for collective, transformative action on a global scale to celebrate, protect and restore our planet.

Cover of a practical guide for Environment Day 2022

#OnlyOneEarth Practical Guide

UNEP has published a practical guide outlining some of the collective, transformative actions that governments, cities, businesses, organizations and individuals can take to protect and restore our planet.

What is World Environment Day?

Led by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and held annually on 5 June since 1973, World Environment Day is the largest global platform for environmental public outreach and is celebrated by millions of people across the world. This year it is hosted by Sweden.

Where did #OnlyOneEarth come from?

“Only One Earth” was the slogan for the first United Nations Conference on the Human Environment, held in Stockholm in 1972. This put sustainable development on the global agenda and led to the establishment of World Environment Day. Fifty years later, Sweden is hosting Stockholm+50 from 2 to 3 June, and World Environment Day on 5 June.

Why take part?

Time is running out, and nature is in emergency mode. To keep global warming below 1.5°C this century, we must halve annual greenhouse gas emissions by 2030. Without action, exposure to air pollution beyond safe guidelines will increase by 50 per cent within the decade and plastic waste flowing into aquatic ecosystems will nearly triple by 2040.

We need urgent action to address these pressing issues, making “Only One Earth” and its focus on living sustainably in harmony with nature, as pertinent as ever.

Making sustainable living the default option

Truly transformative options towards sustainability need to be available, affordable and attractive for people to make better daily decisions. Key areas for transformation include how we build and live in our homes, cities and places of work and worship, how and where our money is invested, and what we do for fun. But others of greater magniture also include: energy, production systems, global trade and transport systems, and protection of biodiversity.

Many of these options can only be created by larger entities: national and sub-national governments, financial institutions, businesses, international organizations, and other organizations with the power to rewrite the rules, frame our ambition and open up new horizons.

Nevertherless, individuals and civil society are pivotal advocates, awareness-raisers and supporters. The more we raise our voices, emphasize what needs to be done and point out who is responsible, the faster change will come.

By supporting World Environment Day 2022 and the #OnlyOneEarth campaign, you can help ensure this unique and beautiful planet remains a comfortable home for humanity.

 

Did you know?

  • We are using the equivalent of 1.6 Earths to maintain our current way of life, and ecosystems cannot keep up with our demands.
  • Our lifestyles are associated with two thirds of all greenhouse gas emissions - studies show that sustainable lifestyles and behaviours could reduce our emissions by 40 to 70% by 2050.
  • Sustainable consumption and production can drive economic development, mitigate climate change, positively impact health and pollution, and help alleviate poverty – potentially increasing incomes by an average of 11% in low- and medium-income countries by 2060, and 4% in high-income countries.

Get involved!

Only One Earth slogan over an image of the Earth in pink

Live updates of hundreds of global activities

Tune in to the live updates of activities taking place around the world, featuring stories, events with high level speakers, report launches, social and videos.

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Related links

A woman takes care of plants in a nursery

Join the #OnlyOneEarth movement through the official website of World Environment Day 2022. You can access more interesting information, the actions you can carry out to contribute, as well as a large number of materials to promote the movement through social media. Every performance, no matter how small, matters.

city of Stockholm, Sweden

Stockholm+50, held on 2 and 3 Jun, brings leaders and representatives from governments, businesses, international organizations, civil society and youth together in the Swedish capital. The meeting aims to drive action toward a healthy planet for the prosperity of all and will commemorate the 50th anniversary of the United Nations Conference on the Human Environment.

illustration of people with clock, calendar, to-do list and decorations

International days and weeks are occasions to educate the public on issues of concern, to mobilize political will and resources to address global problems, and to celebrate and reinforce achievements of humanity. The existence of international days predates the establishment of the United Nations, but the UN has embraced them as a powerful advocacy tool. We also mark other UN observances.