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World Earth Day

World Earth Day
Highlights

People from all over the world celebrate earth day with great enthusiasm and interest on each 22nd of April since 1970 to save the natural assets of...

People from all over the world celebrate earth day with great enthusiasm and interest on each 22nd of April since 1970 to save the natural assets of their earth. The idea for a national day to focus on the environment came to Earth Day founder Gaylord Nelson, then a US Senator from Wisconsin, after witnessing the ravages of the 1969 massive oil spill in Santa Barbara, California.

Inspired by the student anti-war movement, he realized that if he could infuse that energy with an emerging public consciousness about air and water pollution, it would force environmental protection onto the national political agenda. Senator Nelson announced the idea for a “national teach-in on the environment” to the national media; persuaded Pete McCloskey, a conservation-minded Republican Congressman, to serve as his co-chair; and recruited Denis Hayes from Harvard as national coordinator. Hayes built a national staff of 85 to promote events across the land.

April 22, falling between Spring Break and Final Exams, was selected as the date. Earth Day 1970 achieved a rare political alignment, enlisting support from Republicans and Democrats, rich and poor, city slickers and farmers, tycoons and labor leaders. By the end of that year, the first Earth Day had led to the creation of the United States Environmental Protection Agency and the passage of the Clean Air, Clean Water, and Endangered Species Acts. “It was a gamble,” Gaylord recalled, “but it worked.”

Earth Day had reached into its current status as the largest secular observance in the world, celebrated by more than a billion people every year, and a day of action that changes human behaviour and provokes policy changes. Earth Day Network (EDN), the organisation that leads Earth Day worldwide, has announced that Earth Day 2018 will focus on mobilising the world to End Plastic Pollution, including creating support for a global effort to eliminate single-use plastics along with global regulation for the disposal of plastics.

EDN will educate millions of people about the health and other risks associated with the use and disposal of plastics, including pollution of our oceans, water, and wildlife, and about the growing body of evidence that decomposing plastics are creating serious global problems, according to earthday.org.

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