- April 7, 2022
Earth Day or World Planet Earth Day is celebrated around the world on April 22.
The date represents the fight in defense of the environment, promoting reflection on the importance of the planet and the development of an environmental conscience.
With approximately 5 billion years and 6 billion inhabitants, planet Earth is our home. For this reason, we must care for and preserve its natural resources.
Today, we know that the natural resources offered by planet Earth are finite. Therefore, they must be exploited in a sustainable way and Earth Day is an opportunity to discuss environmental issues and raise awareness of the importance of conserving the planet.
Taking care of planet Earth is everyone’s responsibility.
How Earth Day came about?
The date was created through an environmental protest that took place in 1970, led by environmental activist and US senator Gaylord Nelson (1916-2005).
The demonstration on ecological issues took place on April 22, 1970 in the cities of Washington, New York and Portland; hence the choice of date to commemorate Earth Day.
With the help of several educational communities, totaling approximately 20 million people, the activist made a great movement with marches and speeches that warned about environmental issues. Some of the topics covered were pollution, destruction of the environment, deforestation and the greenhouse effect.
The intention was also to pressure the government and thus achieve some of its objectives. After eight months of the event, a body responsible for environmental matters called the Environmental Protection Agency was created, and several projects were also implemented and executed.
This event was also essential for the passage of laws that protected the environment in the United States, such as the Clean Air Act (1970) and the Endangered Species Act (1973).
This moment represented a milestone in the history of ecology. From then on, many meetings, conferences, debates were created around the environmental issue, such as the Stockholm Conference (1972).
However, only 37 years after the movement started by Senator Nelson, in 2009, the UN created International Earth Day, celebrated on April 22nd. Furthermore, it has been named as International Mother Earth Day.
The Earth Charter
The Earth Charter is a document that was proposed at the Rio-92 event. After much debate, it was ratified in 2000.
Its basic principles are:
- RESPECT AND CARE FOR THE COMMUNITY OF LIFE
- ECOLOGICAL INTEGRITY
- SOCIAL AND ECONOMIC JUSTICE
- DEMOCRACY, NON-VIOLENCE AND PEACE
Earth Day messages chalked on a New York City street in 1970. Credit: Santi Visalli/Getty Images
Why is it important to develop an environmental conscience?
In recent years, humanity has experienced many environmental catastrophes: fires in Australia, the Amazon and the United States; high temperatures, droughts; spills of oil or other chemicals in seas and rivers; among other disasters. In addition to these damages to the environment, the Covid-19 pandemic has highlighted the problems that exist in the ecosystem, since climate change, man-made damage to nature, deforestation, illegal trade in wild species and other activities are linked to transmission of infectious diseases from animals to humans, such as SARS-CoV-2.
According to the United Nations Environment Program, humans report a new infectious disease every four months; of these diseases, 75% come from animals. Therefore, it is important to promote the protection of the environment, animals and ecosystems, as it is the only way to save the planet.
Earth Day Activities
Various types of activities can be carried out to celebrate Earth Day such as:
- Preparation of posters on the main actions involving sustainable development;
- Holding of debates on the importance of these actions;
- Invite professionals to discuss the matter with the distribution and planting of seedlings;
- Cleaning of green areas;
- Environmental competitions, among many others.
People individually or collectively can take many steps to consciously commemorate World Earth Day and help preserve the environment.
Remember “Our planet is our home; let’s preserve it.” (Amoes Xavier)
HAPPY EARTH’S DAY!
ROO BAGS DIRECTOR