What is Earth Day?
Earth Day was founded by peace activist John McConnel in 1969. The first Earth Day celebration was in 1970, meaning that this year is the 52nd annual Earth Day. It is a global event designed to demonstrate the importance of protecting the environment. Since its inception, the Earth Day organisation has led various fundraising campaigns, awareness events, and more.
Why Do We Celebrate Earth Day?
Earth Day Organisation, along with its partners, is working towards reaching net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by mid-century to keep the global temperature below 1.5°C. They describe how “we need to act (boldly), innovate (broadly), and implement (equitably). It’s going to take all of us.” With Earth Day currently one of the largest single-day protests in human history, this pressure upon governments to reach previously promised targets is vital for our Earth's future.
Not only does the Earth Day Organisation highlight some of the most vital, current, environmental issues, but they have also achieved a lot - making celebrating this day so important. Since its conception, Earth Day has got one billion people motivated to act in the interests of the planet, with over 75,000 corporate partners across 192 countries working to drive the action forward. The goal is “to diversify, educate and activate the environmental movement worldwide”.
The first-ever Earth day brought 20 million Americans — 10% of the U.S. population at the time — to streets, college campuses and hundreds of cities to protest environmental ignorance and demand a new way forward. The first Earth Day is credited with launching the modern environmental movement.
Earth Day 1970 led to the passage of landmark environmental laws in the United States, including the Clean Air, Clean Water and Endangered Species Acts and the establishment of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Many countries soon adopted similar laws, and in 2016, the United Nations chose Earth Day as the day to sign the Paris Climate Agreement into force.
More recently, Earth Day has successfully launched the Climate Literacy Campaign. This urged governments attending the crucial United Nations climate summit in 2021 to make climate literacy a core feature of school curricula across the globe. To date, 400 organisations representing 100 countries and over 300 million people have signed on in anticipation of stepped-up action and ambition at COP26.
More of the Earth Day Organisation’s success can be found here.
What Is This Year's Theme?
The theme of Earth Day 2022 is “Invest in Our Planet”. The focus is on activities that promote a partnership between businesses, governments, and citizens for urgent action towards environmental protection in order to ensure a sustainable future.
How Do We Invest in Our Planet?
Here at ZeroSmart we are pretty adamant on investing in our planet all year round. We do this by finding and funding the best climate solutions in the world. We are only able to do this thanks to our community of Earth lovers who offset their own carbon footprints or purchase climate positive gifts.
Our solutions include planting mangrove trees in Madagascar. Along with numerous environmental benefits such as absorbing high levels of CO2 from the atmosphere, preventing soil erosion and protection biodiversity, this project also ensures steady and sustainable fair-wage income, food, shelter, clothing, medicine, access to education and routes out of extreme poverty for the local population who help us plant and protect the trees.
Our community also provides energy-efficient cookstoves in Eritrea. We are empowering women to build, install, and maintain the cookstoves. Our energy-efficient cookstoves are 70% more fuel-efficient than traditional cooking methods and reduce pollution by up to 95%. This results in saving 24,000 tonnes of CO2 per year, tens of thousands of trees, and countless lives.
For more climate projects we invest in, check out Our Projects.
In conclusion, Earth Day is a wonderful day to celebrate our planet, which gains more traction and sees more wins every year. There is a whole array of ways to participate in Earth Day: find local events near you, take action by offsetting your carbon footprint, or invest in someone else’s future by giving them an Earth-friendly gift.
How are you celebrating Earth Day this year? Let us know @zerosmartuk.