Earth Day – Living In Harmony With Our Planet
Earth Day is an annual environmental day dedicated to promoting awareness about protecting our planet and getting active through sustainable practices. Earth Day may be one day a year, but it gives us the opportunity to reconnect with our natural world and create awareness about the significance of sustaining the very planet that gives us life every single day.
How Earth Day To Be:
Before Earth Day came about in 1970, the excessive pollution produced by leaded gas from motor vehicles as well as industrial factory smoke and sludge were all considered normal within the US and globally.
However, the senator of Wisconsin at the time, Senator Gaylord Nelson, had been concerned about the environment’s deterioration due to America’s major industrial activity. This led to Nelson teaming up with Pete McCloskey (a Republic Congressman with a conservation mind) and Denis Hayes (an activist), to organise environmental awareness to be taught on college campuses on April 22 1970.
This sparked student protests around environmental issues, on college campuses, which drew the national media’s attention. This event was a catalyst for the formation of the Earth Day Organisation, which inspired many to partake in raising awareness about the importance of protecting the planet.
Why Earth Day Is Important?
“Each year it’s estimated that about a billion people participate in Earth Day in their own ways, big and small.” Earth Day allows like-minded individuals to come together and make a difference in the way we see our natural world and how we treat it.
Every sustainable-based contribution, whether it’s big or small, brings us all a step closer to living in a world where we exist in harmony with nature. After all, we are all connected to nature in many surprising ways.
The Interconnected Relationship Between Nature and Humans
We are more connected to the planet than we may think and how connected we are to Earth and beyond is rather intriguing. There are many examples that illustrate how similar nature’s physicalities and organic structures are to the human anatomy.
Through these examples, we are able to witness this often unseen interconnectedness that we share with mother nature. Our human anatomy makes up who we are as individuals, and it is amazing to be able to see a bit of who we are through our natural world. What’s even more extraordinary is that this connectedness we share expands far beyond Earth, as galaxies and black holes have been found to look rather similar to the structure of a human eye.
Thus, looking after nature, in essence, translates to us looking after ourselves. The more sustainably we choose to live this Earth Day (and every day), the more harmonious our relationship with nature will be.
The Importance of Sustaining Healthy Biodiversity and Ecosystems
Biodiversity and the rich array of life forms on Earth showcase the wonders of the natural world. Biodiversity “refers not just to species but also to ecosystems and differences in genes within a single species.”
It is vital that ecosystems run efficiently and work harmoniously, as this will ensure a healthy and rich biodiversity.
“Biodiversity is the key indicator of the health of an ecosystem. A wide variety of species will cope better with threats than a limited number of them in large populations. Even if certain species are affected by pollution, climate change or human activities, the ecosystem as a whole may adapt and survive.”
Healthy ecosystems make up “the foundation of all civilisation and sustain our economies,” therefore we cannot live without them.
5 Ways To Get Involved In Sustainable Practice This Earth Day:
What each of us decides to do on Earth Day varies from person to person. Some of us might get started on environmental projects, while others might just take the day off to fully surround and immerse themselves in nature.
Forest bathing is an excellent way to reconnect with the planet and to remind ourselves how important being in a healthy natural space is. Forest bathing is the practice of spending time, being completely surrounded by nature, and utilizing your sight, smell, touch, and hearing to experience nature’s calming benefits. Read more here.
Want to get creative by starting a fun-filled, sustainable project this Earth Day? Upcycling art may just become your new hobby.
Upcycled art is essentially the process of repurposing what would be considered waste, eg. plastic bottles, to art forms of various kinds. These upcycled art forms include using cardboard for sculptures, using paper scraps or bits of glass for collage art, and the list goes on. Read our blog on Upcycled Art to get started this Earth Day!
I’m sure we can all agree that recycling is an essential process to help reduce the amount of waste that ends up in landfill sites and within our world’s oceans. Items such as tins or cans, paper, cardboard boxes, electronic devices, glass, plastic, clothing, and even wood, can all be recycled and reused.
Recycling also leads to the reduced reproduction of these items and materials, which majorly benefits our environment. It is a simple yet effective sustainable practice that everyone can partake in this Earth Day.
Did you know?
♻️ The world “generates 381 million tonnes of plastic waste annually, and with the amount of plastic waste set to double by 2034, recycling plastic is vital.”
♻️ Recycling or saving 1 ton of cardboard /paper “can save up to 17 trees, two cubic yards of landfill capacity and 4100 kW/hours of electricity!”
♻️ “70% less energy is used when making new paper from recycled stock than when using virgin pulp!”
♻️ Paper material can be recycled up to seven times!
♻️ Metal and glass are sustainable recyclable materials as they can be recycled many times over (their quality doesn’t really change after each recycle).
♻️ Wood is also an extremely sustainable recyclable, due to its various uses. “Wood can be reused as a building material, recycled into mulch for landscaping. Even low-grade wood is useful because we can use it for fuel to generate environmentally friendly energy.”
This Earth Day let’s strive to be mindful and let’s all invest back into our planet!
4. Use Less Water
Simple, everyday activities such as showering, as opposed to taking a bath; not leaving the tap water running when brushing your teeth; showering for shorter periods of time; and even investing in a rainwater collecting system can allow you to majorly save on water consumption.
5. Buy Items That You Are Able To Reuse
Our consumer-based behaviours and choices have a direct impact on the health of our environment. “Consumers are responsible for 60-70% of all direct and indirect emissions”. These emissions are often a result of buying non-reusable items that end up being pollutants in the environment. Thrifting, lowering your use of single-use plastics and buying bulk are simple yet effective ways to make a difference this Earth Day.
As you have read, Earth Day may just be one day of the year, but it can help us set the tone for living more sustainably every day. Whether you decide to go on a nature walk, create upcycled art, or organise a beach clean-up, all efforts count toward us creating a brighter and greener future. So get started today!
P.S. Did you know that Earth Day even has its own theme song! Give it a listen below:
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Greenpop Foundation NPC is a registered non-profit organisation. Registration Number (NPO): 151-411 NPO.