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AMMAN — World Wildlife Day, which falls on March 3, this year celebrates forest-based livelihoods and seek to promote forest wildlife management models and practices that accommodate both human well-being and the long-term conservation of forests.
World Wildlife Day will be celebrated in 2021 under the theme “Forests and Livelihoods: Sustaining People and Planet”, as a way to highlight the central role of forests, forest species and ecosystems services in sustaining the livelihoods of hundreds of millions of people globally, according to World Wildlife Day website.
“Forests, forests species and the livelihoods that depend on them currently find themselves at the crossroads of the multiple planetary crises we currently face, from climate change, to biodiversity loss and the health, social and economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic,” according to the website.
Jordan’s Ajloun Forest Reserve, which was established in 1987, is dominated by open woodlands that account for a significant part of Jordan’s forested area, which does not exceed 1 per cent of the country’s entire land area, according to the Royal Society for the Conservation of Nature (RSCN).
“Ajloun Forest Reserve has outreach and public awareness programmes, with the aim to highlight the importance of wildlife fauna and flora,” Othman Tawalbah, director of Ajloun Forest Reserve told The Jordan Times on Tuesday.
The reserve works with local communities in the area, Tawalbah said, adding that there are 60 employees working in the reserve and who are from Ajloun, in addition to working directly or indirectly with other locals.
“Forest cover is decreasing, which is a dangerous indicator, therefore it is necessary to raise awareness, in order to protect the Kingdom’s natural heritage,” Tawalbah said.
He added that the reserve has empowered women initiatives in the area, in addition to creating sustainable economic and social benefits for locals.
On December 20, 2013, at its 68th session, the United Nations General Assembly proclaimed March 3 — the day of signature of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) in 1973 — as UN World Wildlife Day to celebrate and raise awareness of the world’s wild animals and plants.