World Wildlife Day 2017: When is it, why is it celebrated and what is the theme this year?

Arkadev Ghoshal

World Wildlife Day (WWD) is a relatively new event and is only in its fourth year now. It is celebrated on March 3 every year because this was the day on which the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) was officially signed.

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March 3 was declared UN World Wildlife Day at the at 68th session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) on December 20, 2013. Since then, WWD has been celebrated on the same day every year, but with a different theme.

According to the World Wildlife Day official website: "World Wildlife Day will be celebrated in 2017 under the theme 'Listen to the Young Voices.' Given that almost one-quarter of the world's population is aged between 10 and 24, vigorous efforts need to be made to encourage young people, as the future leaders and decision makers of the world, to act at both local and global levels to protect endangered wildlife."

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It added: "World Wildlife Day 2017 encourages youth around the world to rally together to address ongoing major threats to wildlife including habitat change, over-exploitation or illicit trafficking. Youth are the agents of change. In fact, we are already seeing the positive impacts on conservation issues made by some young conservation leaders around the world. If they can help make a change, you can too!"

The UN has also made several arrangements to promote the day, including organising worldwide events to celebrate World Wildlife Day 2017. It has also arranged for special posters and images to be shared on social media worldwide in order to promote the day.

Videos have also been made that promote World Wildlife Day and its theme this year. One such video can be seen here:

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