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Earth Day

Earth Day

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.

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.

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    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. 

Earth Day: One Act

Prosperity Without Pollution

Pollution Recognizes No Boundaries

Selected Earth Day Links

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