International Day of the Tropics

June 29 is International Day of the Tropics. The Tropics are a region of the Earth, roughly defined as the area between the tropic of Cancer and the tropic of Capricorn. Although topography and other factors contribute to climatic variation, tropical locations are typically warm and experience little seasonal change in day-to-day temperature. An important feature of the Tropics is the prevalence of rain in the moist inner regions near the equator, and that the seasonality of rainfall increases with the distance from the equator.

Wonders of the Tropics

On 29 June 2014, Nobel Laureate Aung San Suu Kyi launched the inaugural State of the Tropics Report. The report is the culmination of a collaboration between twelve leading tropical research institutions, and offers a unique perspective on this increasingly important region. Marking the anniversary of the report’s launch it was proposed that June 29 be inaugurated as the ‘International Day of the Tropics’.

The Tropics account for 40 per cent of the world’s total surface area and are host to approximately 80 per cent of the world’s biodiversity and much of its language and cultural diversity. The tropical region faces a number of challenges such as climate change, deforestation, logging, urbanisation and demographic changes.