The Earth is the most important planet in the solar system. Why? Because it is the only planet with life (that we know of), and we live here. We need a healthy Earth to be able to survive and it is our responsibility to keep it clean and to thrive for future generations. Earth Day is a special day where we celebrate the Earth and find ways to help make it a happier and healthier place to live.
Polluting Our Plant
Clean water and clean air are two major things we need to survive. Although it is often hard to see, pollution is a big problem on Earth.
The world’s population continues to grow, and so does plastic pollution, our carbon footprint, and global temperatures. 71% of the Earth’s surface is water. Thousands of oil spills happen yearly, polluting our rivers, lakes, and oceans. Plastic waste like plastic bottles and plastic bags are also in our waters, causing issues for our oceans. They take a long time to break down and thousands of marine life like seabirds, sea turtles, seals, and other marine mammals are killed yearly because of plastic. They are killed because they eat or get tangled in them.
Carbon dioxide pollution is also a big problem on Earth. Greenhouse gases or CO2 emissions come from fossil fuels like gasoline burning in cars. Last year, scientists projected that carbon dioxide emissions would grow by 4.9% and carbon dioxide makes up about 76% of all greenhouse gas emissions. When the sun reaches the earth’s atmosphere, it goes right through, and some bounces back into space. Greenhouse gases do not allow sunlight to escape back into space. The greenhouse effect causes our Earth to warm up. As a result, we see climate change and other problems with Earth’s natural resources.
What Is Earth Day?
Earth Day is celebrated every year on April 22nd. This special day is celebrated to help raise awareness of environmental issues. Many people participate in activities to help make the Earth a healthier place. Both indoor and outdoor activities are held on Earth Day. These activities include picking up trash, planting trees, and teaching others about environmental protection. Lots of people believe if everyone makes a few small changes, it will make a huge difference.
History of Earth Day
Before the celebration of Earth Day, Americans were polluting Earth with gas from automobiles. Different industries were pumping out smoke and smog without any regulations or laws and everything was threatening human health. In 1970, senators and college students put together the first Earth Day, and they decided on April 22nd.
The first official Earth Day inspired 20 million Americans, or 10% of the United States population during that time. Many groups became a united front and fought together against oil spills, polluting factories/power plants, pesticides, loss of wilderness, extinction, and toxic dumps. The first Earth Day led to the creation of the United States Environmental Protection Agency, and this agency helped pass many of our first environmental laws.
Some of the first environmental laws were the National Environmental Education Act, the Occupational Safety and Health Act, and the Clean Air Act. Congress also passed the Clean Water Act, the Endangered Species Act, and the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act within the next couple of years. All of these laws are important for our Earth.
In 1990, Earth Day, also known as International Mother Earth Day, became a global celebration. Two hundred million people in 141 countries celebrated. In 1992 the first United Nations Earth Summit was held in Rio De Janeiro. Since then, this annual event has grown with more people and countries joining efforts to educate others and help solve environmental concerns like global warming, climate change, and clean energy.
Fun Earth Day Facts
Here are some fun facts all about Earth Day!
- More than 100,000 people in China rode bikes to work on Earth Day in 2012.
- Twenty-eight million trees were planted in Afghanistan on Earth Day in 2011.
- Earth Anthem is the official Earth Day Song, and it was written in 2013 by Indian poet Abhay Kumar.
- The world’s population is over 8 billion and only 32% of those people recycle.
- Over 95% of primary and secondary schools in the US and millions of schools celebrate Earth Day with events to help save the planet.
These are just a few interesting facts about Earth Day.
Ways Kids Can Help On Earth Day
Earth Day is the perfect opportunity for kids to get involved. You can make a big difference and help the earth. Here are some great ways you can help on Earth Day and beyond.
- Plant a tree, some flowers, or fruits and vegetables in your backyard or neighborhood.
- Recycle your bottles, papers, and cans.
- Bring garbage bags and clean up your neighborhood, a park, or other areas.
- Use reusable water bottles instead of plastic ones.
- Take a trip to a national park and experience the beauty of Earth.
Earth Day is a day to help us remember and celebrate our beautiful planet. Without it, we would not be able to survive. Recycling, planting trees, cleaning our rivers, lakes, and oceans, and other essential tasks will help keep our Earth healthy and strong for many years. Use Earth Day as a day to find ways to make our Earth better than you found it.