Earth Day is an annual day, observed on April 22, in which the World demonstrates its support of environmental protection. It also happens that it is my wife’s birthday and the one-year anniversary of this blog. 🙂 It is a special day that needs special celebration on all three fronts.
The day was recognized by the United Nation in 2009 and is celebrated in one form or another worldwide. The preamble to the United Nation’s declaration is given below:
GENERAL ASSEMBLY PROCLAIMS 22 APRIL ‘INTERNATIONAL MOTHER EARTH DAY’
ADOPTING BY CONSENSUS BOLIVIA-LED RESOLUTION
In Address, Bolivia’s President Says 60 Years after Human Rights, Declaration ‘Mother Earth Is Now, Finally, Having Her Rights Recognized’
As the United Nations General Assembly proclaimed today International Mother Earth Day, Bolivian President Evo Morales Ayma applauded the Members of the world body who had “taken a historic stand for Mother Earth” by acknowledging humanity’s common interest in the protection of the planet and its environment.
“Sixty years after adopting the [Universal Declaration of Human Rights], Mother Earth is now, finally, having her rights recognized,” said President Morales, immediately following the Assembly’s unanimous adoption of a resolution designating 22 April each year as International Mother Earth Day (A/63/L.69).
Assembly President Miguel d’Escoto Brockmann thanked Bolivia for having taken the lead in bringing the resolution to the Assembly and added that, by declaring the International Day, Member States recognized their responsibility, as called for in the Rio Declaration, adopted at the 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED), also known as the “Earth Summit,” to promote harmony with nature and the planet to achieve a just balance among economic, social and environmental needs of the present and future generations of humanity.
By the text, the Assembly acknowledged that “the Earth and its ecosystems are our home,” and expressed its conviction that, in order to achieve a just balance among the economic, social and environmental needs of present and future generations, “it is necessary to promote harmony with nature and the Earth.”
- Become a climate reporter by uploading a picture of yourself being impacted by climate change or taking action against it and thus helping the network to construct a global mosaic.
- Protect our clean air by telling the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) to enforce the “Clean Air Act.”
- Recycle your E-waste. Every year, thousands of old electronic devices are thrown into landfills, when they could have been recycled.
- Once you have decided what to do, submit your commitment through the network.
In order to honor the three events that I simultaneously celebrate, I have decided to try to dig deeper. One of the earlier manifestations of Earth Day was proposed by Senator Gaylord Nelson and was first celebrated on April 22, 1970 as an environmental “teach-in” day. Following this tradition, I feel that the best way to celebrate, with potentially the greatest impact, is to spread the word not by posting on a network on the internet, but through discussion with family and friends.
Yesterday, I had a class on Climate Change at my school. We talked about Earth Day, with a special emphasis on what we as individuals can do, as well as how we can convince our family and friends to do something of their own. We also discussed trying to get these friends and family to try to spread the word to their respective family and friends. I asked the students to write a comment to this blog that describes what they did and the reaction that they have experienced. I am calling on all of you, dear readers, to join my students in this effort.
My birthday is not far away (toward the end of May). It will be a good opportunity to dedicate another blog to this effort to find out the concrete results (and to remember that pledges and promises are not equivalent to actions).