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ESRAG & UNEP Handbook

ESRAG and UNEP World Environment Day Handbook


Rotarians are working hard to improve the lives of people all over the world by creating positive, lasting change in their communities and beyond. We are continuously striving to increase our impact by attracting new members and creating new opportunities to engage for the benefit of all. As such, we are pleased to introduce this World Environment Day handbook created by the Environmental Sustainability Rotarian Action Group, with input from UN Environment.

The state of the environment underpins, and has the power to impact, all six areas of focus. A vital component to humanity’s well-being, we increasingly need to recognize the environment’s elemental role in creating truly sustainable and lasting change. The opportunity to collaborate with UN Environment — the United Nations agency that serves as the global authority on the environment — is well-timed for those who want to make a difference at the local level. We hope to see Rotarians worldwide connect and implement many of the suggestions in this handbook. Our collective efforts will result in greater global impact. By helping to protect our natural world, we support all of our areas of focus — and take action to create positive, lasting change — across the globe, in our communities, and in ourselves.

Barry Rassin, President,
Rotary International, 2018-2019

Mark Daniel Maloney, President,
Rotary International, 2019-2020


The content of the Handbook is the product of an extended collaboration with the Daniel Cooney, a former Rotary Peace Fellow and other members of the Communications staff of UN Environment, headquartered in Nairobi, Kenya and members of ESRAG's Division leadership team.  Christopher Puttock, ESRAG's Chair-Elect aided by Pat Armstrong, Director of Membership; Rachael Blair, our on-the-ground liaison in Kenya; Karen Kendrick-Hands, Director of Communications and Rick Randolph, Director of Projects. Larry Hands, Director of IT, assisted in collecting and polishing some of the images.


Click Here for the Handbook PDF

For a high resolution, print ready version (35MB), click here


UN Environment:
Rotarians Vital to Climate Solutions

With pollution and climate change wreaking economic havoc, causing more than 7 million premature deaths a year, and fueling the refugee crisis, “we are doing a poor job for our planet and our peoples’ health as we pursue economic development,” warned Dr. Hartwig Kremer,  Head  of UN Environment’s  Global Environment Monitoring Unit, in a speech to ESRAG members in Hamburg.  But because we are “in touch with local communities, professionals, and business leaders worldwide,” he added, Rotarians can catalyze solutions.

The UN provides the framework and tracks global progress: “In September 2015, with the backing of 193 world leaders, 17 Sustainable Development Goals were agreed to eradicate extreme poverty and achieve a healthy, sustainable world by the year 2030—the  2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development,"  Kremer said.

“Agenda 2030 is a magnificent achievement,” he added.  “Now what we need to do is figure out what that means at the local level.  It’s important that we demonstrate stewardship and show success. UN Environment and Rotary can deliver that by collaborating at scale with a focus on the people.”

Kremer praised District 9212’s Adopt a River initiative in East Africa, led by District Governor Joe Otin, as proof of Rotary’s power to mobilize communities to protect the resources essential to life and livelihood. This is just one of the Action Steps he highlighted from the  World Environment Day Handbook for Rotary Clubs  released jointly by ESRAG and UN Environment in June.  Monitoring air quality, planting trees, helping communities go solar, and beating plastic pollution are other key strategies.

How about using the  Handbook  and  Dr. Kremer’s Power Point  to inspire your District’s Rotary, Interact, and Rotaract Clubs to take action?



Project Category: 
Transportation - clean
Tree planting
Sustainable economies
Storm surge
Solar energy
Air pollution
Disease control and prevention
Forests - preventing deforestation
Energy - renewable
Endangered species
Agriculture - sustainable