WHAT IS IT AND WHY SHOULD YOU CARE?
Earth day is on 22nd April each year.
When was Earth Day started?
Earth day was started in 1970 in the USA.
It was created by both John McConnell, a peace activist and Senator Gaylord Nelson.
McConnell had proposed the idea at a UNESCO conference in 1969 and the original plan had been for Earth Day to coincide with the Spring Equinox (the first day of Spring)
However, at the same time Nelson had proposed a national environmental ‘teach in’ across the US on 22nd April.
The two came together and due to the changing nature of the Spring Equinox they decided to set the date as 22nd April.
The main purpose was to highlight the issues concerning dangerous, toxic drinking water, air pollution and the effects of pesticides.
10% of Americans (around 20 million) at that time rallied together and protested in the streets, parks, universities and public spaces.
Earth Day was celebrated every 10 years until it became global in 1990 – when 200 million people around the world got involved in one way or another.
After 1990 it became an annual celebration and a great opportunity to raise awareness for environmental issues.
Today, it is estimated that, over 1 billion people engage with Earth Day!
What has Earth Day achieved?
The first Earth day led to the creation of the ‘Environmental Protection Agency’
Which introduced laws such as the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act and the Endangered Species Act in the US and shortly after many other countries followed suit.
They have continuously pushed for better environmental education and demanded for solutions to the biggest environmental issues.
As awareness grows and more people start to take part in Earth Day activities more and more positive changes will happen for our environment.
Every year there is a set theme.
The theme for 2021 is ‘RESTORE OUR EARTH‘
They are not only focusing on the prevention of further damage to our environment but more on how to tackle the issue of repairing the damage that has already been done.
The topics that are officially being addressed by Earth Day in 2021 are:
- Climate and environmental literacy
- Climate restoration technologies
- Reforestation efforts
- Regenerative agriculture
- Equity and environmental justice
- Citizen science
- Clean ups
Why should you care about it?
If you value our environment at all (and we’re pretty sure you do since you are reading this!) then Earth Day is a fantastic thing.
Without Earth Day our entire planet would possibly never have joined together, united in a goal to tackle the biggest environmental issues we face.
Important laws wouldn’t have been put in place when they were and it would have taken a lot longer to address them, if indeed at all!
Earth Day is not only an amazing way to raise global awareness of the worlds environmental problems but also raise awareness of what individuals can do to have a positive effect on the world around us.
Whether it’s through…
- Litter/trash clean ups
- Planting trees
- Helping pollinators such as bees
- Reducing the amount of single use plastics we use
Earth day is certainly a force to be reckoned with and the incredible way it has spread awareness globally is unparalleled - why not do something to join in this year.
Thinking of doing your own clean up?
If you’re interested in doing your own litter picks or beach clean ups download our FREE Guide to Safe Litter Picking to help you stay safe and get the most out of your litter picking experience!