Helping you to plan climate and sustainability action in March

Photo: jplenio from Pixabay / Graphics: author

Welcome to my monthly overview of what’s happening on the Sustainability Calendar. As always the full year-long calendar can be found here.


It seems everything happens in March; certainly, you’ll find as we move towards the summer months the calendar gets more crowded. Maybe it’s because the weather is nicer (at least here in the UK). For those of you in the southern hemisphere, sorry. I guess the calendar is driven by us in the north.

World Wildlife Day & International Day of Forests

The first thing I want to draw your attention to is UN World Wildlife Day, on Wednesday, 3rd of March. This day celebrates the diversity of the planet’s fauna and flora and is used to raise awareness about the issues facing them. This year the theme is “Forests and Livelihoods: Sustaining People and Planet”, which ties in nicely with one of our other days this month: International Day of Forests on Sunday, 21st March. Both days place a particular focus on the importance of forests in sustaining life both locally and on a more global scale.

A virtual event will be hosted by the UN to mark World Wildlife Day (details here). I also suggest that if you have forest or woodland near you indulge in a spot of forest bathing, which is great for your mental health and will let you realise just how important your local forest or woodland is.

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Global Recycling Day

Next up is Global Recycling Day on Thursday, 18th March. Recycling is, and should always be, a last resort because of the energy it consumes and the diminishing quality you get in recycled materials. We should always seek to reuse, repair or repurpose our items, in preference to recycling. Nonetheless, recycling remains an important tool in the fight against overconsumption and waste.

This Global Recycling Day, I’d urge you to think about how you can reduce the amount of recycling in your life, not by sending more materials to landfill, but by working out what you repair, reuse, or repurpose. Globally recycling schemes and facilities are at or beyond capacity, and we should do what we can to not add more to the pile.

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World Water Day

Next up is World Water Day, on Monday, 22nd March. This day celebrates water in all its forms and marks how fundamental it is to human life and the environment. The theme this year is “valuing water”.

This year the UN is gathering views on what water means to people, by use of the hashtags #WorldWaterDay and #Water2me. Alternatively, why not take the time to visit your nearest body of water and think about what it means to you.

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World Meteorological Day

Next, is World Meteorological Day, on Tuesday, 23rd March. This day highlights the importance of meteorological science to the welfare of society. This year’s theme is “the ocean, our climate and weather” highlighting how easy it is to overlook the significant impact of oceanic weather considering the ocean makes up 70% of the planet’s surface.

There are some great resources at the WMO site linked above, providing more information about how the oceans influence our climate and the impact on climate change.

Earth Hour

Finally, Earth Hour is on Saturday, 27th March at 8:30 pm in your timezone. In past years Earth Hour has asked people to turn off their lights to draw attention to nature loss and the climate crisis. This year they’re taking a different approach, with a Virtual Spotlight that aims to make their new video the most-watched on the day.

Animal celebrations

This month we have days for buzzards, pandas, sparrows, frogs, bears and manatees.

Everything Happening in March 2021

Until 7 March: Fairtrade Fortnight (international)

1 to 7 March: Food Waste Action Week (UK)

3 March: UN World Wildlife Day

4 March: the release of “Under a White Sky: The Nature of the Future” by Elizabeth Kolbert (note, as part of my pledge to support local business I’m not including a link to Amazon. Please buy this through your local bookseller where you can)

8 March: International Women’s Day

14 March: International Day of Action for Rivers (see also World Rivers Day in September)

15 March: Buzzards Day (no link)

16 March: Panda Day (no link) (see also International Red Panda Day in September)

18 March: Global Recycling Day (see also Recycle Week in October and America Recycles Day in November)

20 March: World Sparrow Day

20 March: World Frog Day (no link)

21 March: International Day of Forests and World Wood Day and World Planting Day (no link) (see also World Rainforest Day in June)

22 March: World Water Day

22 March: International Day of the Seal

22 to 28 March: Circular City Week — New York

23 March: World Bear Day

23 March: World Meteorological Day

27 March: Earth Hour (see also Earth Day in April)

31 March (last Wednesday in March): Manatee Appreciation Day (no link)

Remember the full 12-month calendar can be found here. As always if you know of an event or observance that needs adding to the calendar, let me know. If you see anything marked as “no link” above, that’s because I couldn’t find a link to an official page. If you can please help me to fill the gaps.