Sunday, April 22, 2012

Earth Day

Earth Day has arrived...42 years in the making! 

Are we any better off? Are we more enlightened? Are we still fighting the same issues and ideals?  Will you celebrate Earth Day by pledging something "green" for one day or incorporate  eco-friendly ideas daily?

These are the questions that often enter my train of thought when Earth Day and Earth Month begin.  I become rather annoyed when people only take notice of environmental issues when it is April 22nd.  I especially become annoyed when my son's school only takes part in environmental issues for one week, instead of making it a priority everyday.  The only way to make change is to start with our youth because unfortunately....dare I say....the older generation are typically resistant to change (that was too politically nice)!  What I meant to say men and women my age and older are narrow minded, close minded fools!!! Muuuaaaawwww (insert maniacal laugh here)!!!!  Think about the history of the environmental movement, for goodness sake....

>April 22, 1970 the first official Earth Day

Why was Earth Day started?  Well, prior to 1970 there was an amazing book called Silent Spring by Rachel Carson 1962 that was the "real" beginning to the "green" movement.  No one before brought public awareness to organisms, environment and public health.  Then as with everything else time passed. 


>1969 a (what else) massive oil spill occurred in Santa Barbara California.  So a Gaylord Nelson, Senator from Wisconsin, was inspired by this spill, and the energy behind anti-war movement to begin Earth Day.  Along with others coast to coast rallies started a movement.  This led to the creation of United States Environmental Protection Agency and the passage of the Clean Air, Clean Water and Endangered Species Acts. 

>June 20 1979 President Jimmy Carter installed 32 solar panels on the White House.  He believed in the power and inexpensive use of the sun to provide an alternative energy source to our ever growing thirst for power.  He also believed in leaving the thermostat in your home alone by throwing on a sweater and blanket in cooler months to save energy.   President Jimmy Carter was ahead of his time, but he is only remembered by sky high oil prices and gas shortages.

>1981 President Ronald Reagan took office and by 1986 all 32 solar panels were removed.  One solar panel went to the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History, one went to the Carter Library, one went to Solar Science and Technology Museum in Dezhou, China. Huang Ming (funny China produces 80% of the worlds panels today) and in 1992 about half of the 32 panels are on the roof of the Unity College cafeteria in Maine.  Reagan also depleted the budget for research and development of alternative energy by the time 1986 rolled around.

>1990 another big went global 141 countries it was the prelude to the 1992 Earth Summit and Senator Nelson awarded Presidential Medal of Freedom.

>2010 President Barack Obama orders solar panels back at the White House.  As of panels!

Why you have things still not changed? Those against the environmental movement are bigger with more money and more lobbyists....yes my friends money talks in government and action walks.  All I can say is we need to get those with money on our side and talk with our own money at the stores.  Consumerism drives change..why? Because money makes corporations follow the bottom line.  If we can't force change in our government we can force companies to change their products and drive by impacting their bottom line!!

So if you ask me what I am doing today on Earth Day to pledge or make a commitment to the environment....nothing!  Nothing different than I do everyday, I choose to make decisions everyday not just one day a year based on sustainability, based on betterment of the future for my son and eco-systems everywhere.  I just wish we could all get there, so take a moment and think of one thing you could do each day to go "green" and increase it every day to one more thing.  Pretty soon it will be a habit for you too.

My son, Cocoa, and Lucky


Earth Day at my house....trying to beat 100 degree weather with an early hike with the dogs and cutest hiking partner ever!

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