Global Network of National Geoparks

International Year of Planet Earth launched at UNESCO

Published :February 14, 2008

The International Year of Planet Earth was officially launched on Feb. 12 at the headquarters of UNESCO in Paris. UNESCO's Director General Koïchiro Matsuura was host the event.

In his inaugural speech, the Director-General recalled: "The journey that has led us here today has been exciting and stimulating. The first milestone was reached in October 2005, when UNESCO's General Conference unanimously adopted a resolution recommending the declaration of 2008 as the International Year of Planet Earth. Just two months later, in December 2005, the UN General Assembly, following UNESCO's recommendation, adopted Resolution 192. This officially proclaimed 2008 the International Year of Planet Earth. UNESCO was designated lead agency for the Year, in recognition of our longstanding experience in the Earth sciences."

During the launch, issues addressed included: world population growth and climate change; Earth resources; threat or treat? ; And geohazards: minimizing risk while maximizing awareness.