New York: South Korea will host World Environment Day 2025 with a focus on “ending plastic pollution globally”, the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) and the Republic of Korea said on Friday.
World Environment Day, marked annually on 5 June, was established by the United Nations General Assembly in 1972.
Over the past five decades, the Day has grown to be one of the largest global platforms for environmental outreach. Tens of millions of people participate online and through in-person activities, events and actions around the world.
The world produces more than 430 million tonnes of plastic annually, two-thirds of which are short-lived products that soon become waste, filling the ocean and, often, working their way into the human food chain.
In 2024, the Republic of Korea will host the Fifth Session of the Intergovernmental Negotiation Committee on plastic pollution, including in the marine environment.
The negotiations aim to develop an international legally binding instrument on plastic pollution, as mandated by United Nations Environment Assembly resolution 5/14 .
“World Environment Day in 2025 will be a watershed moment for the conservation of the global environment as we expect to have concluded the global plastic agreement. As the host country of the 2025 World Environment Day, the Republic of Korea will lead international efforts to prevent plastic pollution,” said Republic of Korea Environment Minister Han Wha-jin.
Ridding the planet of plastic pollution is an important contribution to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, including those on climate action, sustainable production and consumption, protection of seas and oceans and repairing ecosystems and retaining biodiversity.
“Strong partners and strong partnerships are the backbone of environmental multilateralism, and UNEP is grateful to the Republic of Korea for taking up the mantle of hosting World Environment Day 2025 in the pursuit of an end to plastic pollution,” said Inger Andersen, Executive Director of UNEP.
World Environment Day was hosted by Côte d’Ivoire with the support of the Netherlands in 2023, while the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia will host the day in 2024.