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World Environment Day 2024

What is the United Nations World Environment Day 2024?

World Environment Day was first established by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) in 1973. On this day we come together as a global community to encourage environmental awareness and promote actions that can protect our planet against its greatest destructor which is, well us.

This year, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia host World Environment Day 2024 on the 5th of June with a focus on land restoration, drought resilience and desertification.

This year’s environmental tagline is #generationrestoration with 1,798 fantastic events being planned worldwide. These cover a wide range of activities from ‘Recover Restore Mother Earth’ in Secaulus, New Jersey to ‘Community Tree Planting 2024’ in London. The aim of these activities is to restore the planet as best we can for future generations. This year’s theme promotes healthy soil cultivation and protection of our pollinators in the agricultural sector. Did you know that without bats there would be no avocadoes!

In addition, the theme covers the importance of restoring freshwater eco systems. A healthy ecosystem can aid drought protection. The implementation of the Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework will help to renew coastlines and marine life, both of which are crucial to providing us with oxygen, food and water. More projects being undertaken include designing urban forests to improve air quality, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and reduce the need for mechanical cooling within cities.

World Environment Day

World Environment Day and the UN Sustainable Development Goals

The United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals were established in September 2015, they cover both the mitigation of environmental impact and the adaptations which are required to conserve our environment. ISO 14001:2015 is a Standard that can help an organisation contribute to these Goals and address targets in line with legal requirements.

ISO 14001 is an internationally recognised Standard for Environmental Management Systems. Using ISO 14001 helps you focus on the management of environmental issues within your organisation. These can range from resource use, air and water emissions, waste, water pollution, and land conservation.

ISO 14001’s is the most frequently applied standard. Companies who are ISO 14001 certified commit to demonstrating that their environmental management system:

  • commits to pollution prevention;
  • commits to complying with legal and other requirements;
  • commits to improving environmental performance.

World Environment Day and your commitment to ISO Legal and Compliance Obligations

As part of your commitment to comply with legal and other requirements, need to understand legislation (both Statutory – e.g. Acts, and Regulatory – e.g. regulations). An Act is statutory law, it both sets out legal requirements and establishes the penalties for noncompliance while Regulations are a supplemental set of rules and requirements which must be enforced to ensure that an Act is followed correctly.

The UK places various controls on environmental management. There are several examples where well-established legislation and regulation have contributed to and improved environmental performance.

The two Acts that drive many Regulations are:

Environmental Protection Act 1990: This act requires that any pollutants or waste produced within a company is handled safely and in accordance with legal compliance. Depositing, treating, storing or the disposing of controlled waste is forbidden unless your company has a waste management licence. This act also discusses procedures to ensure companies consider and take steps to avoid the harmful impacts that contaminated land or water may have on human and animal inhabitants. If corrective action is not taken to ensure noncompliance is dealt with a ‘remediation notice’ may be imposed.  Additionally, Environmental Protection Act 1990 sets out regulations for offences regarding litter and the incorrect release of Genetically Modified Substances as well as establishing the respective Nature Conservancy Councils for England and Scotland and the Countryside Council for Wales

Environment Act 2021: This act requires the government to set at least one improvement target in each of the following areas: air quality, biodiversity, water, and resource efficiency and waste reduction. This act establishes a long-term Environmental Improvement Plan for the UK, which will be reviewed every five years.

Businesses should assess their operations to identify potential environmental impacts and ensure compliance with the requirements of the Environment Act 2021 so that they contribute to the improvement plan. This may involve conducting environmental audits and risk assessments to identify areas for improvement.

Businesses with ISO 14001 environmental management system will need to develop and implement sustainability plans to minimise their environmental impacts. This could include targets to reduce emissions, conserve water, minimise waste generation, and enhance biodiversity conservation efforts. By doing this, the company can genuinely report that its environmental management system is helping towards the goals of World Environment Day.

Whilst the Environmental Protection Act 1990 and the Environment Act 2021 are high level Acts, there are several regulations that outline what organisations must do to comply with legislation.

World Environment Day 2024: Environmental Legislation around the world.

The following examples from the UK, Ireland and India show what countries around the world are doing to improve their environmental impact and align with World Environment Day 2024’s #generationrenovation ideals.

The United Kingdom:

The Environmental Targets (Marine Protected Areas) Regulations 2023 This biodiversity target requires not less than 70% of protected features in marine protected areas (MPAs) to be in favourable condition before the end of 31st December 2042.
The Ecodesign for Energy-Related Products and Energy Information Regulations 2021 These regulations provide new Ecodesign and Energy Labelling requirements for energy-related products placed on the market in Great Britain. This allows consumers to decide the most energy efficient products on the market.
The Environmental Protection (Plastic Straws, Cotton Buds and Stirrers) (England) Regulations 2020 These regulations restrict the supply of single-use plastic straws, single-use plastic-stemmed cotton buds, and plastic drink stirrers in the UK. The aim is to prevent pollution or harm to marine life.


Climate Action and Low Carbon Development Act 2015 This Act establishes An Chomhairle Chomhairleach um Athrú Aeráide or the Climate Change Advisory Council. These plans include pursuing the transition to a low carbon, climate resilient and environmentally sustainable economy.
Environmental Protection Agency (Integrated Pollution Control) (Licensing) Regulations 2013 These are designed to regulate industrial activities to prevent or reduce pollution. These regulations provide a framework for licensing businesses that have the potential to cause significant environmental impact.
European Union (Environmental Impact Assessment) (Waste) Regulations 2012 These regulations aim to assess and mitigate the potential environmental impacts of waste management projects.


The Biological Diversity Act, 2002 This legislation aims to conserve and sustainably manage the country’s biological diversity. The Act implements the provisions of the Convention on Biological Diversity seeking to regulate access to biological resources, ensure equitable sharing of benefits and promoting conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity.
The Environment (Protection) Act 1986 This legislation addresses environmental concerns. It empowered the central government to protect and improve the quality of the environment and prevent environmental pollution. It provides a legal framework within India to conserve the environment and promote sustainable development.
The Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act 1981 The Act outlines provisions for the prevention and control of air pollution from sources, including industries, automobiles, and domestic activities. It details penalties for non-compliance and sets guidelines for the assessment and mitigation of air pollution.

How can your company apply ISO 14001 on World Environment Day 2024?

What can your company do to celebrate World Environment Day 2024? Challenge yourselves to do your bit toward #generationrestoration today.

Here are some suggestions:

  1. Environmental Impact Assessment: Conduct an internal environmental review to identify areas which could be improved upon in your environmental management system or if areas are lacking an environmental policy this could be implemented.
  2. Use a Green Energy Supplier: Working with green energy supplies to ensure that they use 100% renewable electricity and gas. This is especially beneficial to manufacturers as it can help reduce your carbon footprint and potentially lower their long-term energy costs.
  3. Reducing Single Use Plastic: Reducing single-use plastics is a crucial step for companies aiming to improve their sustainability practices and reduce their environmental impact. Look to redesign products to incorporate reusable or biodegradable materials.
  4. Nature Zones: By establishing nature zones around your operation companies can help to protect nearby natural habitats from their industrial impact. These zones can serve as wildlife habitats and reduce habitat fragmentation.
  5. Plant Trees: Tree planting initiatives directly contribute to reforestation efforts and combat climate change. Companies can organise tree-planting events either on their own premises or in collaboration with local environmental organisations.
  6. Staff Training: World Environment Day 2024 can be an opportunity to raise awareness of sustainability practices among your employees and customers. This could include CPD workshops, seminars or companywide campaigns on recycling, energy conservation, and eco-friendly products; this in turn can foster a sense of accountability within the staff body.


Need help building a legal register? Why not demo our ICR toolkit? A member of our team at ISO Compliance Register would be happy to help support your company’s environmental goals.