Earth Day is an annual event on April 22 to demonstrate support for protecting the environment. The month of April is when we get to celebrate what mother earth has done for us, a chance to give back and do better. Earth day is more than just a particular day of the month. The history behind how the day was coined is historic. Decades ago, Americans consumed large amounts of leaded gas from massive and inefficient automobiles. Towns were expelling smoke and sludge with no idea of the consequences. Back then, air pollution was a sign of prosperity.
Origins of Earth Day
In the early 1960’s Senator Gaylord Nelson planted the seeds that bloomed into what we know as Earth Day. During this time, college students were very engaged in social activism. Nelson introduced the idea for a teach-in on college campuses about climate change and recruited Denis Hayes, a young activist. Nelson chose April 22 for the campus teach-ins because it fell between Spring break and Final exams to leverage the most significant student participation. Many public schools (k-12) were also closed for Spring Vacation on April 22, allowing the opportunity for teach-ins, litter clean-ups and other environmental activities. The first Earth Day was celebrated in the United States on April 22, 1970. Twenty million demonstrators participated, demanding a healthier, sustainable environment. Initially, Earth Day was referred to as Ecology Day, Ecology Drive, Environment Day, and E-Day in news accounts of the actions across the United States. Hayes became the executive director of the national campaign. In 1990, environmental leaders approached Hays to organize another Earth Day Campaign. This year, Earth Day went global, mobilizing 200 million people in 141 countries and shedding light on environmental issues like recycling.
Earth Day Today
Today, more than 1 billion people every year participate in Earth Day. This movement has become a significant stepping stone to protecting the planet. Earth day is broadly recognized worldwide as a day of action and change. Each passing year creates increasing urgency as our world slowly deteriorates, and the fight for a cleaner environment becomes more apparent. April 22, 2022, will be the 52nd Earth Day. This year’s theme is Invest In Our Planet. There’s no better time to take action than now. Humanity should reflect their efforts every day, not only on April 22.
Take this chance to educate those around you about the importance of taking care of our planet. Even small actions such as recycling, using reusable items or using an electric bike can impact significantly.
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