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Under theme of biodiversity and nature: Montréal celebrates World Environment Day 2020

5 juin 2020

Montréal, June 5th, 2020 - On this World Environment Day, celebrated today, June 5, we invite the population to take part in the various activities planned as part of this unique event, focusing on preserving biodiversity and the relationship between humans and nature. The UN Environment Programme has designated Montréal as the North American host city for the 2020 edition of the World Environment Day.

“Today, we celebrate World Environment Day, and I am proud that Montréal was chosen to be the North American host city for this event. More than ever, we must rethink our relationship with nature. The COVID-19 pandemic is causing us to plan our economic and social recovery by focusing our actions on the resilience of our cities. In light of the challenges we are faced with, let's work on making our communities greener and more inclusive,” said Mayor Valérie Plante.

“We are thrilled to have Montréal as our North American host city for this year's World Environment Day,” said Barbara Hendrie, Director, North America for the United Nations Environment Programme. “Reflecting this year's theme of ?Time for Nature', Montreal has shown exemplary leadership in putting nature at the heart of policymaking. Leaders everywhere need to reimagine their relationship with nature and begin to prioritize the protection of biodiversity. When we destroy nature, we compromise the system that supports life on earth, so its protection is essential for our future,” concluded Barbara Hendrie.

ACTIVITIES FOR THE PUBLIC

Below is a list of activities open to the public on Friday, June 5, 2020:

9 a.m. to 12 p.m.: Unlocking human potential for biodiversity
Space for life and the UN Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) Secretariat will be holding a joint meeting online titled Unlocking Human Potential for Biodiversity. This event will enable participants to imagine the future of our planet (of our cities and spaces) and to think about the cohabitation of species, including humans.

In the context of a world crisis, how can we direct our future actions together to preserve biodiversity on our planet? This issue will be discussed during a roundtable exchange attended by Mayor Valérie Plante, by Barbara Hendrie, Director, North America for the United Nations Environment Programme, Mme Elizabeth Maruma Mrema, Acting Executive Secretary of the Convention on Biological Diversity,   M. Richard Morgan, Executive Director of the North American Commission for Environmental Cooperation (CEC), and by M. Charles-Mathieu Brunelle, Director of Montréal Space for Life.

This online event will also bring together four renowned and engaged scientists. The public can watch live, as the panel reflects on this important issue.  Space for life will webcast the event on Facebook Live, at 10:30 a.m. To find out more, go to: https://espacepourlavie.ca/en/unlocking-human-potential-biodiversity.

3 p.m. to 7 p.m.: “Pathway to Paris”, a virtual music festival for our planet
A major concert presented free of charge by Montréal artist and environmental activist Rebecca Foon and her guests. Rebecca Foon is a Canadian cellist, singer and composer who lives in Montréal and in New York. A wonderful selection of artists from around the world have pooled their talents to offer a live musical performance delivering a vibrant message of hope to our planet. The concert will be webcast from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. on the website of the non profit organization: www.pathwaytoparis.com, as well as on Facebook Live:  www.facebook.com/pathway2Paris.

Mayor Valérie Plante will be speaking during this event that is orchestrated from Montréal, with artists from across the globe.  The detailed programming can be found on the organization's website.

GLOBAL MOBILIZATION FOR BIODIVERSITY

Six concrete actions to support biodiversity in Montréal
Montréal is a North American leader in sustainable development. Recognizing the importance of nature for its communities, the city has been stepping up its environmental protection efforts over the past few years.

Discover 6 of our initiatives to support biodiversity, as well as the leaflets presenting each one. These initiatives involve concrete action taken by the city to protect its natural heritage, and best practices regarding biodiversity to share globally, so as to expedite the international shift towards creating greener, healthier cities.  Every leaflet provides information to help successfully complete similar projects, and explains in what way the initiative contributes to reaching international biodiversity objectives. The subjects are diverse: the management of ecosystems, coexistence with coyotes, the conservation of trees and wildlife, environmental action days, improved wildlife observatories, an urban passage for wildlife, let's spring into action.

Other cities across Canada and the world will be invited to join the collective movement and to draw their inspiration from Montréal's best practices. The leaflets are available online at  https://montreal.ca/en/ca and at www.citieswithnature.org. This project was realized in collaboration with ICLEI and the UN Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) Secretariat.

The Ecosystems Management Program in our large parks
For 25 years now, the Ecosystems Management Program has been maintaining an essential balance between protecting the ecological integrity of our large parks and providing access to the public, so that our population can continue to enjoy the physical and psychological benefits of nature.

This program won the Distinction secteur biodiversité 2020, awarded by the Réseau Environnement. For more information, go to: https://montreal.ca/en/ca

Mission Monarch, a participative science program
Montréal's Space for Life Insectarium invites the public to participate actively in preserving the monarch butterfly. Both in urban and rural areas, people can join the “Mission Monarch” participative science project right away! This initiative aims to track the reproductive success of the monarch butterfly. So, go ahead: find milkweed, check for monarchs, write down your observations and send your data to the Mission Monarch team! For more information, go to: www.mission-monarch.org/fr

Lighting of iconic places
To highlight World Environment Day, several of Montréal's iconic sites will have green lighting, symbolizing nature and the environment.  The Olympic stadium, the Biosphere, and the Samuel-De Champlain bridge will light up green tonight.
 
For more information on World Environment Day, go to:
https://montreal.ca/en/articles/world-environment-day
https://www.worldenvironmentday.global/
https://www.un.org/en/observances/environment-day

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