Today, April 22, 2010 marks the 40th anniversary of Earth Day, our way of recognizing nature’s beauty and the world’s splendors. A global holiday, the purpose of Earth Day is to advance climate policy and energy efficiency, as well as promote green living and environmental sustainability.
Earth Day’s biggest advocate is the Earth Day Network (EDN), an organization aimed at broadening, diversifying and mobilizing the worldwide movement of a healthy and sustainable environments. Though the EDN is far from acting alone. Making it the largest secular event in the world, more than one billion people from 190 countries participate, along with more than 20,000 partners and organizations.
But how do they, and how can you help participate in Earth Day? Here are a few ideas on how to get involved:
Celebrating Earth Day
Demonstrate the value of recycling and sustainable clothing by turning your old, ratty T-shirts into a quilt. Cut them up and sew or tie them together to use as a blanket on your next picnic.
It’s not Arbor Day, but you can still plant a tree. Trees help reduce greenhouse gas emissions, break up pollution, secure soil and provide a place for biodiversity to prosper.
Start a compost pile. Put eggshells, potato peels and orange rinds into a pile and stir up until they break down into organic matter. Then spread it about your garden or yard to enhance the soil structure.
Read! Learn more about the environment by reading up on climate change, endangered species and water shortages. Research obscure areas like the deserts in Morocco to learn about different ecosystems.
Get rid of the litter in your neighborhood. Take a walk about your nearest pond, park, street or block and pick up any stray trash. Then divvy it up to recycle.
Have kids? Here are few ways to get them involved in the Earth Day action too:
Use recycled newspapers to make a papier-mache globe. Then you can demonstrate how much of the earth is covered in water versus land.
Build a bird-feeder or birdhouse to put in your backyard to encourage foul population. Then track which types of bird come and go.
Turn off the cartoons! Save our limited energy supply by reducing the amount of electricity they use. Use a different kind of energy by taking the kids to the park to pump their legs on the swings.
Make a reusable bag. Take the kids to the fabric store to pick out a heavy cotton fabric (maybe even an organic one) and sew it into a simple rectangle with handles. Then bring it with you to the grocery for some healthy treats.