The FSM Focus Implementation Group wishes to call your attention to an often-overlooked proclamation—the International Day of Forests (IDF), which occurs March 21 each year.


First proclaimed in 2012, this year the International Day of Forests will address the theme “Forests for Sustainable Cities,” focusing on how forests and trees in urban areas regulate temperature and water flow, provide nutritious foods and shelter, cleanse the air, and foster community cohesion and individual well-being, among other benefits.


Trees serve as nature’s lungs, giving off oxygen and absorbing carbon dioxide. By absorbing and storing carbon dioxide, trees help ease the impact of climate change in our cities. One tree absorbs up to 150 kg of carbon dioxide. According to recent estimates, air pollution kills 5.5 million people globally, so trees in our cities combat this situation by removing harmful pollutants and particles. Trees also give off oxygen: one large tree can provide a day’s supply of oxygen for up to four people.


This year, to celebrate IDF, consider taking three friends and hugging a tree in your city—thanking it for keeping you alive all these years!


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