Earth Day explained
Every year on 22nd April, Earth Day is celebrated globally by over 1 billion people in more than 193 countries to mark the anniversary of the birth of the modern environmental movement.
History of Earth Day
The first Earth Day was held on 22nd April 1970 in the USA to demonstrate against the deterioration of the environment from recent oil spills, pollution from factories and power plants as well as the extinction of wildlife. Various rallies took place across the country, inspiring 20 million Americans to take to the streets, parks and auditoriums to demonstrate again the impacts of 150 years of pollution which had left behind a legacy of serious human health impacts. Such was the overwhelming support around these shared common values that the first Earth Day led to the creation of the United States Environmental Protection Agency and the passage of the country’s first environmental laws.
Fast forward to 1990, when Earth Day went global. Mobilising an estimated 200 million people across 141 countries and lifting environmental issues on the world stage. The 1990 Earth Day provided a huge boost to recycling efforts worldwide and helped pave the way for the 1992 United Nations Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro.
Earth Day in the 21st century
As awareness of the climate crisis continues to grow, today Earth Day is widely recognised as the largest secular observance in the world, marked by more than a billion people every year as a day of action to change human behaviour, create global awareness and change national and local policies.
Earth Day 2022
Earth Day 2022 theme this year is ‘Invest in Our Planet’. Focused on bringing everyone together to act (boldly) innovate (broadly) and implement (equitably) this year’s theme ensures everyone is accounted for, and everyone is accountable in the quest to preserve and protect our health, our families, our livelihoods. As together we must Invest In Our Planet.
Find more information on Earth Day event, activities and what you can do to make a difference on https://www.earthday.org/earth-day-2022/ What will you do?
REPIC’s 10 tips on how to create new habits to protect our resources
Everyone can adjust their habits to help save the earth’s resources, why not start adopting a few of these habits:
- Avoid single use disposable plastic bottles – instead use a reusable water bottle and fill it with tap water
- Replace car trips with biking, walking or using the train whenever possible in order to reduce your carbon footprint
- Reduce food waste by being aware of what you are buying to limit waste and consider composting any fruit and vegetable waste to use as fertiliser for plants
- Upcycle what you can. Before sending an item for recycling ask yourself could these items have another use in my life?
- Where practical replace disposable items with reusable options – for instance nappies, razors, plastic bags, paper towels
- Consider sourcing second-hand or instead of throwing away and buying new, where safe try to fix it and give it a second life
- Find unloved items at home (especially unwanted electricals!) and either recycle them, pass them on, sell them or donate them towards a worthy cause. According to research by Material Focus – 527 million electricals are hoarded in UK homes – that’s a lot of precious metals that can be recycled into new appliances
- Switch to LED lightbulbs as this uses 90% less energy than incandescent ones
- Safely disposing of hazardous waste items such as paint, batteries, electricals, fluorescent light bulbs to ensure correct treatment and reduce risk of fires and contamination
- Plant native trees and hedgerows, to absorb carbon dioxide and create habitats for wildlife.