Earth day is here! It’s the day to celebrate the plants, the animals, and environmentalism as a whole – a day that Dr. Seuss would approve of as we come together as a nation and “speak for the trees.”
On this day, April 22, in the year 1970, Earth day was formed, on the day that marks the beginning of the modern environmental movement. During this time, pollution was somewhat of a positive sign of progress and development. Corporations and the automobile industry didn’t even give their environmental impact a thought.
Then, in 1962, Rachel Carson’s released her New York Times bestseller Silent Spring. It is said that it was one of the first times that the public was aware of the negative impact of pollution on living organisms, the environment, and on public health. The title ended up selling over 500,000 copies in twenty-four countries.
The idea behind Earth Day came from its’ founder, Gaylord Nelson. The hope was to infuse the youthful exuberance concerning political movements with the environment resulting in moving along environmental legislation in the national political agenda.
On the first annual Earth Day, 20 million Americans showed their passion through demonstrations in streets, parks, and auditoriums in massive coast-to-coast rallies. Thousands of colleges even took part in the environmental frenzy sweeping the nation. It achieved a rare feat, gaining support from both sides of the political aisles. Both “Republicans and Democrats, rich and poor, city slickers and farmers, tycoons and labor leaders” (earthday.org) gave the environmentalism their support. By the end of that year, the first Earth Day started a chain reaction that led to the formation of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the passing of such legislation as the Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act, and the Endangered Species Act.
Earth Day has developed its focus on global warming awareness and a push for a change to clean energy. They continue to include more and more countries and organizational partnerships in their campaign. According to their website, “Today, the fight for a clean environment continues with increasing urgency, as the ravages of climate change become more manifest every day. We invite you to be a part of Earth Day and help write many more chapters—struggles and victories—into the Earth Day book.”
Feel free to join the Earth Day celebration, whether that’s buying a t-shirt, registering or joining event, or helping to raise environmental and climate literacy on their website.
Use their hashtag #EarthDay2017 or tag their twitter, @EarthDayNetwork, and show some social media support!