Earth Day: 22 April 2012
Without the Earth and her resources, we would not be here today! We therefore have a lot to be grateful for and at least once a year, on Earth Day, we have the opportunity to collectively pay our respects.
Earth Day is all about taking the time to stand still and think about what the Earth does for you – and what you can do for the Earth. Yes, it requires a little effort, a little change of habits, and a little change in attitude. Caring for the Earth doesn’t have to be a daunting task. The smallest changes can make a difference, such as becoming aware of the global Earth Day campaign and what it really means to appreciate our planet.
The first Earth Day took place on 22 April 1970 when 20 million American activists protested against what was being done to the environment – things such as oil spills, factory pollution and the use of pesticides. As a result the Environmental Protection Agency was formed, leading to the Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act and Endangered Species Act being passed in the USA.
Since then, Earth Day has become an annual event that takes place around the world every 22 April. It highlights and addresses current problems, but is most effective in raising environmental awareness. The idea is that people will stop, think about the Earth, realise they need to start caring, assess what they can do and act in a more caring way towards our planet.
How will you spend Earth Day?
A little goes a long way… Here are some small things you can do to help the Earth:
- Slow down and fully appreciate the Earth’s abundance. Go for a walk in a reserve and use all your senses to experience nature’s gifts.
- Start a compost heap with your biodegradable waste. Your garden will thank you for it.
- Be water wise – cut your shower short, take a shower rather than bath, fix dripping taps, and install water-saving systems in your toilets and showers.
- Walk or cycle instead of driving short distances if you’re going somewhere on Earth Day.
- Grab an empty rubbish bag when you head out, then collect litter to keep your local park and neighbourhood clean.
- Skip the Sunday roast this once and have a vegetarian day. Better yet, introduce a vegetarian day into every week.
- Know what fish you are eating and if it is legal or recommended - get SASSI’s pocket guide. [http://www.wwfsassi.co.za/?m=1]
- Talk to others about the importance of caring for the Earth.
Today, more than 1 billion people in 192 countries participate in Earth Day activities each year, making it the largest community effort in the world. Join in and do your bit on 22 April! But don’t stop there … make caring for the Earth a way of life.
Fun links to get you in the mood for Earth Day:
- Fun bumper stickers that send a green message http://earth911.com/bumper-stickers/
- How many species are there on the planet? http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-14616161