Today is the 45th anniversary of Earth Day. As the largest civic event in the world, this day aims to spread environmental awareness and encourage us all to care for the environment.
We can all adopt environmentally beneficial actions, big or small. This could include getting on your bike, switching to cleaner energy production to reduce our consumption of finite fossil fuel reserves, planting trees, making your garden wildlife friendly and nurturing any wildlife you meet, reducing your water consumption, joining community beach cleans or organising your own! Many organisations run events focussed on environmental education throughout April.
The Earth day website encourages us to muster our energy and “Channel it into building a clean, healthy, diverse world for generations to come”. Google’s own Earth day attempt to increase awareness is an interactive doodle which links to a quiz to determine which animal you are.
Earth Day 2015 has been called the year that “citizens and organizations divest from fossil fuels and put their money into renewable energy solutions”. It is reported that ¾ of fossil fuel reserves need to remain untapped so that we don’t breach the safety limit. Historic achievements of Earth Day rallying include the establishment of the US Environmental Protection Agency, and Clean Water, Clean Air and Endangered Species Acts after the first Earth day in 1970. Earth day 2000 focussed on increasing awareness of climate change and pushing for widespread adoption of clean energy production.
In 2012 there was an initiative with Avatar director James Cameron to plant 1 million trees and founding the international movement ‘A Billion Acts of Green®’. This encouraged individuals and organisations to take up a green action and register it on the website, before the Rio+20 United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (2012). The original 1 billion target was surpassed in 2012 and now there is an attempt to reach 2 billion!
But remember that “Earth Day is Every Day. To build a better future, we all must commit to protect our environment year-round”.