Earth Day - A Brief History
On April 22, 1970, nearly 20 million Americans rallied for a cleaner, more sustainable environment through "teach in" demonstrations across the country. Springing from the initial Earth Day were significant amendments to the Clean Air Act and the creation of the Clean Water Act.
Earth Day has since become a yearly celebration in more than 175 countries, with one billion people participating in sustainability fairs, cleanups and recycling events worldwide. Activities for Earth Day have expanded so much that the month of April is now considered Earth Month.
With these successes, Earth Day evolved into a movement for environmental causes that are truly global in scope - clean air and water, global warming, etc. However, recycling has been left out in the cold.
CELEBRATE RECYCLING THIS EARTH DAY 2011
None of us are born environmentalists. We all love our planet and understand the importance of these global issues for sustainable living. One of the easiest ways to celebrate Earth Day year round is by recycling.
Why celebrate recycling?Because it is one of the few things we can do that contributes measurably to our planets health on a daily basis. It is a habit that we can all do to contribute to the bigger picture. It has intrinsic value and it is also a symbolic act. People feel good when they recycle, particularly at events. And that good feeling is contagious. Our job is to make recycling available everywhere so people can make a difference, day in and day out.
There is a lot of room for improvement. What is the state of recycling in the country? The facts are that public space recycling is only available at 12% of locations in the United States. There is a lot of room for improvement.
The United States is one of the largest producers of trash, yet we only recycle about 31% of our waste. Recycling is a habit that we can all develop to a make positive impact on our environment every day. When you recycle, every day can be Earth Day.
Here are some goals for EARTH YEAR 2011
- Creating Jobs
- Visibly Cleaner Events
- Respect for the Land
- Conservation of Non-renewable Resources
- Education: It takes a village to raise a generation
- Curbside Diversion from Landfills
- Leadership and Mentoring Opportunities
- Environmental Stewardship
- Buy Recycled or post consumer or recycled content
- Purchase Recycled Products
- Pledge to A Billion Acts of Green
A Billion Acts of Green: Personal, organization and corporate pledges to live and act sustainability is the aim of Earth Day 2011. With more that 42 million pledges thus far, A Billion Acts of Green asks for simple individual acts and larger organization commitments to measurably reduce carbon emissions and support sustainability. Act of green can be submitted through the EDN website. The goal is to register 1 billion act before the
Not all rewards are economic. It is important that recycling "closes the loop". However, the most important benefits of recycling are not quantifiable. Millions of people are passionate about recycling because they recognize it as the voice of the future.
GET INVOLVED IN EARTH DAY 2011
Recycling is our legacy.
The real cost of not recycling today is a waste of spirit, material, and the value of the next generation. When you take a look at the rest of the world now, or fast forward into our future, recycling is inevitable and sustainable.
Recycling is the heart beat of America, yet public policy today is apathetic. Who will protect the recycling culture legend of our grandchildren?
People who recycle today are concerned about the future of the world we share.
Expect a future where Recycling is the Norm.
The disposable society breeds disposable ethics. Recycling recaptures the greatness of our national character. Recycling is about the future. It is up to each of us to help shape a vision of the future where recycling is the norm.
Recycling ethics need to be part of the fabric of our national character.
As they realize that we are borrowing the world from our grandchildren, the public will also become better steward of all our resources.
Final thought- Most see things the way they are. This Earth Day 2011, come out and see the way things can be in your community and your life.
Who speaks for recycling this Earth Day? You do.
Art Johnson is a published author and environmentalist who is dedicated to increasing awareness in conservation and environmental issues. He enjoys writing for blogs such as http://earthday2011.org.