Earth Day has evolved into a day dedicated to environmental sustainability, with events ranging from conferences and panel discussions to global clean-ups; it is an annual celebration held on April 22 to show support for environmental protection. In 1970, a United States senator from Wisconsin organized a nationwide rally to raise consciousness about environmental issues, which became known as “Earth Day.” Rallies were held throughout the world, and the Environmental Protection Agency was established by the end of the year. April 22 has been a significant date, serving as the launch day for a variety of significant affirmative global activities, since 1970, the inaugural year of the annual Earth Day and celebration of the earth and its climate, as well as the proliferation of knowledge on the ways in which we can preserve it. Peace activist John McConnell suggested a day to celebrate the Earth and the philosophy of peace at a UNESCO Conference in San Francisco in 1969, and it was first observed on March 21, 1970, the first day of spring in the northern hemisphere. This day of natural equilibrium was later recognized by the United Nations in a declaration written by McConnell and signed by Secretary-General U Thant. A month later the United States Senator Gaylord Nelson proposed the idea to hold a nationwide environmental teach-in on April 22, 1970. Earth Day prompted 20 million Americans, or 10% of the country’s population, to take to the streets, parks, and auditoriums to protest the effects of 150 years of industrial development, which had left an increasing legacy of significant human health impacts. Thousands of colleges and universities held demonstrations against environmental degradation, and there were large marches in cities, towns, and communities around the country. Earth Day was celebrated in more than 140 countries around the world by 1990. On Earth Day 2016, the United States, China, and over 120 other countries signed the historic Paris Agreement. This signing fulfilled a crucial condition for the landmark draft climate protection treaty to enter into effect, which was adopted by consensus by the 195 countries present at the 2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris. Several groups participated in Earth Day Week events, which consisted of an entire week of activities centered on the world’s environmental issues. Over 100 million people around the world celebrated the 50th anniversary of Earth Day on April 22, 2020, in what has been dubbed the world’s biggest online mass mobilization.
All life on Earth is supported by ecosystems; the healthier our ecosystems are, the healthier our world and its inhabitants are. The first Earth Day triggered an environmental movement, and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) were formed later that year. Researchers estimate that 15 billion trees are cut down each year across the world, so let’s help offset the loss by planting our own. Carbon dioxide is absorbed by trees and is then released as oxygen for humans to breathe. They also provide food and shelter to animals including squirrels and owls. In hotter months, depending on where trees are grown, their shade can also minimize the need for air conditioning. A well drilled by Union Oil Platform A off the coast of Santa Barbara, California, blew out on January 28, 1969. About 10,000 seabirds, dolphins, whales, and sea lions were killed when more than three million gallons of oil spilled. As a result of the tragedy, environmental activists organized to establish environmental regulation, environmental education, and Earth Day. By the end of 1970, the first Earth Day had resulted in the establishment of the United States Environmental Protection Agency as well as the passage of other groundbreaking environmental legislation such as the National Environmental Education Act, Occupational Safety and Health Act, and Clean Air Act. More than 2,000 colleges and universities, 10,000 public schools, and 20 million people (roughly 10% of the US population at the time) engaged in the first Earth Day. International Mother Earth Day was founded by the United Nations in 2009. Every year, over a billion people, are estimated to participate in Earth Day, making it the world’s largest secular celebration. Earth Day 1990 boosted recycling efforts around the world and paved the way for the United Nations Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro in 1992. It also prompted President Bill Clinton to bestow the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest civilian distinction in the United States, on Senator Nelson in recognition of his role as the founder of Earth Day. Changes in biodiversity have an effect on ecosystem functioning, and major ecosystem disturbances can result in the loss of life-sustaining ecosystem goods and services. Impacts on nutrition, health research, or traditional medicine, new infectious diseases, and influencing shifts in the distribution of plants, pathogens, animals, and even human settlements, all of which are influenced by climate change, are some of the specific links between health and biodiversity. Earth Day 2000 built both global and local conversations, using the power of the Internet to rally activists around the world, while also featuring a drum chain that traveled from village to village in Gabon, Africa, touching hundreds of millions of people. Hundreds of thousands of people have gathered for a First Amendment Rally on the National Mall in Washington, DC. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, 20 million people around the world tuned in to the 12-hour Earth Day Live event on April 22, 2020. Despite ongoing efforts, global biodiversity is declining at unprecedented rates in human history. Around one million animal and plant species are thought to be on the verge of extinction. With this big picture and the coronavirus scenario in mind, our immediate goal is to stop COVID-19 from spreading, but it’s also important to address habitat and biodiversity loss in the long run. T The majority of onsite activities held this year, as the world grapples with the COVID-19 pandemic, have been clean-up events, which have never been more critical, particularly with the addition of masks to the overwhelming garbage that is engulfing our earth. Earth Day is now widely regarded as the world’s largest secular observance, with over a billion people participating each year in a day of action to improve human behavior and implement global, state, and local policy changes. As the effects of climate change become more evident every day, the battle for a clean environment is becoming more urgent.