2020: International Year of Plant Health (IYPH)
The United Nations General Assembly declared 2020 as the International Year of Plant Health. The decision was made thanks to joint efforts by the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC) secretariat.
The initiative highlights the importance of unity between nations on behalf of plant health, biodiversity protection and the environment. Moreover, actions which foster food safety and a sustainable economic development are also promoted.
The plan of action for the International Year of Plant Health includes the mobilization of governments, industries, scientists and the general society. The two main goals of this theme are: to work together towards the goal of reducing the spread of plagues, and to encourage scientific innovation and consistent policies for the protection of biodiversity - in both public and private sectors.
According to a survey conduced by the UN, plagues and plant diseases are responsible for severely damaging forests and destroying up to 40% of the world’s food culture per year. This also results in the loss of billions of dollars in commercial revenue.
For this reason, all efforts aimed at reversing these rates are essential. To give an example, the expansion of public policies can generate a widespread recognition, in accordance with the Sustainable Development Goals instituted by the UN. The SDGs encourage actions throughout the next 15 years in crucial areas for both humanity and the planet, sustained by the three dimensions of sustainable development: economic, social and ecological.