World Environment Day is observed annually on 5 June. The theme this year, "Seven Billion Dreams. One Planet. Consume with Care", aims to raise awareness of how humanity, the environment and societies all rely on the responsible management of the planet's natural resources.
One of the ways in which we are spending our natural capital faster than it can reproduce is climate change. Greenhouse gases are emitted faster than they can be absorbed by our shrinking forests and oceans. Using up our natural resources leaves both the environment and humanity with grim prospects. Climate change and natural disasters as a result of global warming are some of the most obvious and significant consequences.
To mark World Environment Day 2015,
IBTimes UK shares aerial photos showing some of the ecological challenges faced by our planet - thanks to the people living on it. Scrapped motorbikes are piled up at a scrapyard in Hangzhou, Zhejiang province, China China Daily/Reuters A woman paddles in a makeshift boat as she collects recyclable trash from a polluted river in Navotas city, Philippines Ezra Acayan/Reuters An aerial view of homes surrounded by rubbish floating in the floodwaters of the Rio Negro, one of the two main tributaries of the Amazon, in Manaus, Brazil Bruno Kelly/Reuters Oil goes into a tailings pond at the Suncor tar sands operations near Fort McMurray, Alberta, Canada Todd Korol/Reuters Labourers work to drain effluent from a leaking tank at a copper mine in Shanghang, Fujian province, China. Environmental authorities said the leak of toxic chemicals had killed or poisoned about 1.89 million kg of fish Reuters An aerial view of a river polluted by toxic chemicals leaching from illegal gold mine in the jungle in Puinawai Nature Reserve, Guainia Department, Colombia Luis Acosta/AFP Bucket-wheel reclaimers move iron ore at a loading terminal in the town of Port Hedland, located in the Pilbara region of Western Australia David Gray/Reuters An aerial view shows the brine pools and processing areas of the Soquimich lithium mine on the Atacama salt flat, the world's second largest salt flat and the largest lithium deposit currently in production, with over a quarter of the world's known reserves, in the Atacama desert of northern Chile Ivan Alvarado/Reuters An aerial view of Anglo American's Los Bronces copper mine at Los Andes Mountain range, near Santiago in Chile Ivan Alvarado/Reuters A view of salt ponds at the Maras mines in Cuzco, Peru, where salt has been obtained since pre-Incan times by evaporating highly salty local subterranean stream water Enrique Castro-Mendivil/Reuters This Greenpeace aerial photo shows a huge area of natural forest which has been cleared in order to be developed for a palm oil plantation in Central Kalimantan province on Indonesia's Borneo island, the habitat of endangered orangutans and tigers Bay Ismoyo/AFP A single tree stands in a deforested area of the Amazon Raphael Alves/AFP A field of dead almond trees is seen next to a field of growing almond trees in Coalinga in the Central Valley, California. Almonds, a major component of farming in California, use up some 10 percent of the state's water reserves Lucy Nicholson/Reuters An aerial view of the Atibainha dam, part of the Cantareira reservoir in Nazare Paulista, Sao Paulo state. Brazil's worst drought in 80 years has left the Cantareira system, that provides greater Sao Paulo with most of its water, with the lowest water level on record, with daily rationing becoming common Nacho Doce/Reuters An aerial view of small dams in dry paddocks north-west of the city of Melbourne. Australia endured its hottest year on record in 2013, with average temperatures 1.2 degree Celsius above the long-term average of 21.8 degree Celsius, breaking the previous record set in 2005 David Gray/Reuters Agricultural farm land is shown next to the desert in the Imperial valley near El Centro, California, as the state endures its worst drought on record Mike Blake/Reuters Fires, which may be wildfires or intentionally set agricultural fires, burn on the continent of Australia, with smoke plumes faintly visible in the night sky, in this picture taken by astronauts on the International Space Station Nasa/Reuters A satellite view shows smoke from forest fires in Sumatra being blown eastwards to southern Malaysia and Singapore Nasa/Reuters A aerial view of smog hanging over part of the Egyptian capital, Cairo Patrick Baz/AFP Smog envelops buildings on the outskirts of the Indian capital New Delhi Roberto Schmidt/AFP An iceberg roughly six times the size of Manhattan breaks off from Antarctica's Pine Island Glacier and heads out into the open ocean, in this Nasa Earth Observatory image Nasa/Reuters