Topics in Focus
Earth Day, April 22, is the annual U.S. celebration of the environment and a time for Americans to assess the work still needed to protect the natural gifts of our planet. Earth Day has no central organizing force behind it, though several nongovernmental organizations work to keep track of the thousands of local events in schools and parks that mark the day. It affirms that environmental awareness is part of the country's consciousness and that the idea of protecting the environment -- once the province of a few conservationists -- has moved from the extreme to the mainstream of American thought.
Proclamation on Earth Day
Over four decades ago, Americans from all walks of life came together to
tackle a shared challenge. Pollution damaged our health and livelihoods
-- from children swimming in contaminated streams to workers exposed to
dangerous chemicals to city residents living under a thick haze of
smog. The first Earth Day was a call to action for every citizen, every
family, and every public official. It gave voice to the conservation
movement, led to the creation of the Environmental Protection Agency,
and pushed our Nation to adopt landmark laws on clean air and water.
This Earth Day, we remember that when Americans unite in common purpose,
we can overcome any obstacle.
The History of Earth Day (PDF - 71kb)
…April 22, 1970, Earth Day was held, one of the most remarkable happenings in the history of democracy… 20 million people demonstrated their support… American politics and public policy would never be the same again. American Heritage Magazine, October 1993
Founder of Earth Day
In 1969, as a U.S. Senator from Wisconsin, Gaylord Nelson came up with one of the most powerful ideas of his time: Earth Day. Inspired by the teach-ins formed to protest the Vietnam War, Earth Day was an instant success, drawing 20 million participants the first year (1970).
What is Earth Day?
Earth Day, April 22, is the annual U.S. celebration of the environment and a time for Americans to assess the work still needed to protect the natural gifts of our planet. Earth Day has no central organizing force behind it, though several nongovernmental organizations work to keep track of the thousands of local events in schools and parks that mark the day. It affirms that environmental awareness is part of the country’s consciousness and that the idea of protecting the environment — once the province of a few conservationists — has moved from the extreme to the mainstream of American thought.
To celebrate Earth Day, we show you the innovations of big cities going green.
This eJournal USA offers perspectives of experts and activists in several key countries on effective policies to curb greenhouse gas emissions to mitigate global warming and adapt to irreversible changes, and features an introduction by U.S. special envoy Todd Stern.
Increasing the efficient use of existing energy supplies is widely acknowledged as the fastest, cheapest, and cleanest way to meet future energy needs. Energy Efficiency: The First Fuel examines the strong U.S. record of tapping efficiency as a resource, and the accelerated efforts by individuals, organizations, and governments to squeeze greater productivity from all energy sources.
This issue of eJournal USA delves into what those familiar with the history of the environmental movement in the United States might see as a surprising trend — the way U.S. corporations in recent years have embraced environmentally friendly ways of doing business. What prompts a corporation to “go green”?
Projected dramatic increases in energy consumption in the coming decades, combined with a higher risk of climate change, require a massive global response based on technological innovation and the power of the marketplace.
Selected Earth Day Links
Earth Day Network
Earth Day Network was founded on the premise that all people, regardless of race, gender, income, or geography, have a moral right to a healthy, sustainable environment.
Help Protect the Environment, Earth Day and Every Day (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency)
Today in History - April 22 - Earth Day (American Memory, the Library of Congress)
Gaylord Nelson and Earth Day: The Making of the Modern Environmental Movement (Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies)
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