Welcome to April, which is celebrated as Earth month. April is also home to Earth Day, which is observed on April 22.
Earth Day started out in the 1970s. The idea for Earth Day came from founder Gaylord Nelson, who was a U.S. senator from Wisconsin.
Gaylord had witnessed the destructiveness of the massive 1969 oil spill in Santa Barbara, Calif.
Taking cues from the anti-war movement of the time, Nelson worked to “force environmental protection onto the national political agenda,” according to earthday.org.
Nelson announced the idea for a “national teach-in on the environment” to the national media; persuaded Pete McCloskey, a conservation-minded Republican Congressman, to serve as his co-chairman; and recruited Denis Hayes as national coordinator.
Hayes built a national staff of 85 to promote events across the land.
The first Earth Day led to the creation of the Environmental Protection Agency and the passage of the Clean Air, Clean Water, and Endangered Species acts.
Earth Day is celebrated all over the country, and you can be a part of the celebration no matter where you live.
Here are some ideas on how to celebrate Earth Day.
- Use cloth napkins and towels instead of paper napkins and paper towels.
- Plant a tree or other plant. Tree planting will take place at Danville’s Earth Day celebration this year. At Garrard County’s Earth Day celebration, they will be giving away free trees and seeds.
- Turn off paper statements and pay your bills online if possible.
- Instead of buying new books, consider going to the library to check out books or visit a bookstore that sells used books, such as Half Price Books in Lexington, located in Hamburg Pavilion.
- Recycle electronics instead of throwing them away. Most electronics can be recycled, including TVs, computers, radios, telephones, cellphones, VCRs and DVD players. You will be able to do this at both Garrard County’s and Danville’s Earth Day events at the end of this month.
- Visit act.earthday.org/ to pledge an act of green. Earth Day is trying to get one billion green pledges by 2012.
There are events in Danville and Garrard County to help you celebrate Earth Day 2011. Both counties are celebrating their events on April 30.