This Saturday, April 22, is national Earth Day! And while we should always try to be contentious about the beautiful world that we live in, let us discuss how this national day got started and some ways to celebrate this weekend!
Earth day was started by Gaylord Nelson, who used to be a U.S. Senator from Wisconsin. He came up with the idea after seeing the detriment that an oil spill caused in Santa Barbara, California in the year 1969. The first Earth Day was the following year in 1970. The fist time that Earth Day was celebrated involved 20 million Americans and lead the way for the Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act, Endangered Species Act and many other environmental laws. By the 90’s, Earth Day had gone global and included 141 countries participating in the holiday and 200 million people around the world bringing awareness to environmental issues and policies.
A few fun facts about Earth Day is that currently over a billion people celebrate the day, making it the largest civic observance in the world. Another fun fact is that the holiday has its own flag which features a photo of the earth that was taken from the Apollo 17 when it was on its way to the Moon.
There are many ways to get involved and to participate this weekend. There might even be some that you already do in your day to day. Recycling is one of the most common ways to get involved. People also set time aside on April 22 to go out and plant a tree with family or friends. If you have recently purchased a home with a front lawn, planting a tree is a great way to not only celebrate the day but to also add to your curb appeal. Grocery stores are now charging roughly ten cents each time you need to buy a paper or plastic bag. A way that we can help out is brining our own tote bags each time we shop. If you are like me, and love meat, try going a week this week being vegetarian. Every little bit helps…and if you can do more, go for it! I have a friend who is very environmentally aware but loves his steaks. What he does is one week on and one week off. That way he reduces his meat eating by 50%! Coffee drinkers can also help out by bringing a reusable coffee cup into their favorite coffee shops. Stores are usually pretty understanding about this and it helps them reduce their waste. Going paperless is also another easy way to help out. You can switch over your accounts and bills to all be online in effort to reduce paper waste. You can also go out and be active on Saturday! There are so many great hiking trails all over Los Angeles. Go for a run, go for a hike, go take a yoga class…. even go out and have a picnic! The weather for Saturday in Los Angeles is predicted to be a nice 87 degrees, so round up your friends and head over to Griffith Park Or Echo Park Lake or any of your local parks.
Again, remember, this is our only world and every little bit helps. Happy Earth Day!