The first Earth Day was celebrated 41 years ago, on April 22, 1970. It’s credited with launching the modern environmental movement and paving the way for other groundbreaking environmental laws, like Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act, and the Endangered Species Act (www.earthday.org).
Today, terms like going green, global warming, and carbon footprint are a part of many students’ vocabulary and may even impact their lifestyle to the point where they’ve organized carpools or become vegetarians. No matter how involved you or your students are with environmental concerns every other day of the year, Earth Day is great way to raise awareness and show people how easy it is to become even just a little more earth conscious. Below is a list of different ways people will be celebrating Earth Day:
- Earth Day Network is asking you to “Pledge an Act, Save Our Planet.” At act.earthday.org, over 102,000,000 people have already made their pledge to start saving, including “I will use less plastic and plant more trees,” “I pledge to save electricity,” and “I pledge to bike.”
- NASA has many Earth Day plans, with many online activities that show NASA’s “involvement in Earth science and the protection and preservation of our home planet.”
- Chat online with a team of Arctic explorers in Greenland who are carefully watching changes in the ice landscape.
- Join the NASA Earth Day video contest by submitting a video to YouTube that shows the real-world benefits that result from NASA’s Earth science program.
- Starbucks invites everyone to bring in a reusable mug or tumbler for a free coffee or tea, and for those who don’t have one, they will be on sale on April 22. Last year, more than 1.2 million people participated in Starbucks’ Earth Day event. Not only that, people continued bringing their reusable cups more than 32 million times throughout the year, which cut 1.45 million pounds of paper from the landfills in 2010 (www.starbucks.com)
- Check your local paper for Earth Day activities you can get involved in right outside your front door.
- Celebrate on your own:
- Plant a tree.
- Walk to work.
- Build a birdhouse.
Let us know what you are doing to celebrate Earth Day this year.