International Mountain Day
Dominica has joined the rest of the world in observing International Mountain Day, on Tuesday, December 11th, 2012.
International Mountain Day is an opportunity to create awareness about the importance of mountains to life, to highlight the opportunities and constraints in mountain development and to build partnerships that will bring positive change to the world’s mountains and highlands.
Mountains are crucial to life, and whether we live at sea level or the highest elevations, we are connected to mountains and affected by them in more ways than we can imagine.
Mountain biodiversity plays a key role in the support of global environmental, economic, social and cultural sectors through connections to a rich variety of plants and animals, air pollution, climate change, mining, hydropower, tourism, forests, and agriculture.
Therefore the challenge is to sustainably manage mountain regions to avoid degradation and avoid subsequent increases in poverty and hunger.
Our indigenous people, The Kalinago, named the island Waitukubuli, meaning “tall is her body”. Dominica’s mountains soar to nearly 5,000 feet, their slopes thickly forested and beautifully crowned with rain forest and elfin woodland.
Our volcanic mountains have enabled us to offer very valuable products which help boost our tourism industry.
Our bubbling hot springs which have given rise to numerous sulphur spring baths in the calm surroundings of the rainforest, offer relaxing and therapeutic experiences.
The Morne Trois Pitons National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, boasts of the second largest boiling lake as well as freshwater lakes, cool rivers and spectacular waterfalls.
This year the day is celebrated under the theme ‘Celebrating Mountain Life’, which strives to achieve a stronger engagement of persons and the civil society in sustainable mountain development.
It is also a concrete opportunity to mobilize resources to improve the livelihoods of mountain communities, and special attention will be given to the involvement of youth in global sustainable development.