While our Planet Earth requires more than just one month or day of care, this April we can all take steps to save our beautiful planet. April is International Environmental Awareness Month and April 22nd, is Earth Day, a special day when we honor, celebrate, and work towards improving the world.
Earth Day was founded in 1970 by US Senator of Wisconsin Gaylord Nelson. Partnering with Nelson, environmental advocate Denis Hayes, organized the first Earth Day event and founded the international organization Earth Day Network. With support from both republican and democratic sides of the aisle, Earth Day inspired the creation of the United States Environmental Protection Agency as well as the passage of the Clean Air, Clean Water, and Endangered Species Acts.
This April 22nd, take time out of your busy schedule to improve the earth for future generations. Here are some tips, tricks, and events to attend this Earth Day.
- Earth Day Festivals: These festivals celebrate the beauty of nature and encourage people to make environmentally conscious decisions. Festivals are held in cities such as Dallas, TX, Montgomery, AL, San Francisco, CA, Baton Rouge, LA, and more. To learn more about a festival near you, check out everfest.com
- Join the Earth Day Movement: As the founding organization of the holiday, it has been supporting environmental causes for 49 years. This year’s (2019) campaign focuses on protecting dying species of animals around the world such as bees, coral reefs, elephants, giraffes, and more. In addition to donating, Earth Day Movement also sponsors campaigns throughout the year supporting other environmental issues including protecting North Atlantic Right Whales, pledging to stop using pesticides, and ending plastic pollution. Check out the world’s largest environmental movement at earthday.org
- Volunteering: With over 5.25 trillion pieces of trash, and counting, in our world’s ocean volunteering for a beach cleanup this Earth Day is just a small step in eliminating the impact of human trash waste. Beach cleanups are occurring around the world, from California to Florida and even in the United Kingdom. Surfers Against Sewage and the Vineyard Conservation Society are just some well-known organizations hosting beach clean-ups. Do some research and attend a beach clean near you.
- For beginners: Instead of making eco-friendly changes for one day, start making small changes to live an environmentally friendly life for the long haul. Start with small changes such as giving up plastic your plastic consumption, use reusable bottles, cups, and straws – plastic takes over 450 years to decompose. Other small changes can include recycling, shopping at a local farmer’s market and walking/riding a bike to work if you are able to. You can also start a compost pile by adding food scraps, crushed egg shells, coffee grinds, used napkins, etc. This creates rich and fertile soil to grow fresh fruits and vegetables in your very own garden. Check out our “Beginner’s Guide to a Zero Waste Lifestyle” article here.
Trying to save the Earth in one month or even in one day can be overwhelming, and not possible. However, there are small changes we can all engage in for our planet to be cleaner and healthier. It’s never too late to start, so take action!
By Anisha Wilson