One School, One Tree, One Gift to Nature

International Day for Biological Diversity (IDB)

The Green Wave activities will happen on 22 May because it’s a special day for all life on Earth. Every year, people all around the world celebrate biodiversity on what’s called the “International Day for Biological Diversity” or IDB for short. The main purpose of the day is to raise awareness and understanding of biodiversity issues.

To help countries, schools and other people plan their IDB celebrations, the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) chooses a different theme for each year. Some past themes include: biodiversity and climate change, biodiversity in drylands, biodiversity and poverty alleviation and life insurance in our changing world.

In 2008, the IDB theme was biodiversity and agriculture.

In 2009, the IDB theme was invasive alien species.

In 2010, the IDB theme was on biodiversity, development and poverty alleviation. 2010 was an extra special year because the United Nations General Assembly declared it the International Year of Biodiversity.

In 2011, the IDB theme was forest. To learn more about the International Year of Forests, visit the corresponding UN website and the CBD website.

In 2012, Marine Biodiversity is the theme. Designation of IDB 2012 on the theme of marine ecosystems provides everyone interested in marine life, the opportunity to raise awareness of the issue and increase practical action. For more information, keep an eye on the IDB web page.

In 2013, the theme was Water and Biodiversity, providing everyone an opportunity to raise awareness about this vital issue, and to increase positive action to protect water ecosystems. For more information, visit IDB web page, and take a look at the sections related to Water in the Youth Guide to Biodiversity .

In 2014, the theme was Islands Biodiversity, to coincide with the designation by the United Nations General Assembly of 2014 as the International Year of Small Island Developing States.

For 2015, the theme was Biodiversity for Sustainable Development, to reflect the importance of efforts made at all levels to establish a set of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as part of the United Nations Post-2015 Development Agenda for the period of 2015-2030 and the relevance of biodiversity for the achievement of sustainable development.

In 2016, the IDB theme was Mainstreaming Biodiversity; Sustaining People and their Livelihoods.

2017's theme for the IDB was Biodiversity and Sustainable Tourism to coincide with the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development.

In 2018, the theme for the IDB was Celebrating 25 Years of Action for Biodiversity to coincide with the 25th anniversary of the entry into force of the Convention on Biological Diversity.

In 2019, the theme for the IDB is Our Biodiversity, Our Food, Our Health .

For more information about IDB and background information on the past IDB themes and celebrations, visit the CBD website .

IDB hasn’t always been celebrated in May. Back in 1993, the United Nations General Assembly designated 29 December as the IDB. Seven years later in 2000, the date was moved to 22 May, partly because of the number of holidays that coincide in late December and early January!