NAQOURA, Lebanon: The United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon launched its “Burn fat not fuel” initiative at its headquarters in Naqoura Thursday, as part of celebrations to mark World Environment Day.
Staff members, civilians and military officials participated in a symbolic race marking the start of the project, which is intended to encourage staff to take part in environmental conservation, reduce their use of vehicles and help curb waste and fuel consumption.
Each year, World Environment Day aims to raise awareness about positive environmental initiatives.
“On this World Environment Day, I urge all UNIFIL staff members to take responsibility for environmental conservation,” said the force’s Director of Mission Support Wolfgang Weisszegger.
Weisszegger called on UNFIL staff, who later undertook a massive cleanup of the compound, to ensure that the peacekeeping force remains a model example of environmental awareness.
“This initiative should not be limited to this day, but should instead be a daily affair in the mission,” he said.
The 2014 World Environment Day falls during the U.N.’s International Year of Small Island Developing States, which seeks to raise awareness of the threat posed to certain countries by global warming, and is part of a global debate about how to create a sustainable future for the entire world.
Weisszegger also touched on UNIFIL’s efforts to ensure better management of water resources in light of the relatively dry winter south Lebanon experienced this year, and urged staff to use less water.
A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Daily Star on June 06, 2014, on page 3.