logo
g Text Version
Beauty & Self
Books & Music
Career
Computers
Education
Family
Food & Wine
Health & Fitness
Hobbies & Crafts
Home & Garden
Money
News & Politics
Relationships
Religion & Spirituality
Sports
Travel & Culture
TV & Movies

dailyclick
Bored? Games!
Nutrition
Postcards
Take a Quiz
Rate My Photo

new
Action Movies
Bible Basics
Houseplants
Romance Movies
Creativity
Family Travel
Southwest USA


dailyclick
All times in EST

Full Schedule
g
g Biology Site

BellaOnline's Biology Editor

g

Earth Day - What is Earth Day?

Guest Author - Deborah Watson-Novacek

Every year, people around the world celebrate what is considered to be the anniversary of the birth of the modern environmental movement on April 22nd, 1970.

Earth Day History - The First Earth Day
Earth Day was the brainchild of U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson of Wisconsin. Senator Nelson, long an environmental activist, came up with the idea of Earth Day after touring the aftermath of a large oil spill off the coast of Santa Barbara, California in 1969. To bring attention to what he considered to be the increasing degradation of our natural environment, Senator Nelson proposed that an environmental "teach-in" take place on April 22, 1970. The concept of a teach-in was borrowed from then-popular teach-ins being held to educate Americans on the subject of the war in Vietnam.

In his push for the creation of Earth Day, Nelson announced his idea to a small conservation group in Seattle and later to a meeing tof the United Auto Workers, stating:

"I am convinced that all we need to do to bring an overwhelming insistence of the new generation that we stem the tide of environmental disaster is to present the facts clearly and dramatically. To marshal such an effort, I am proposing a national teach-in on the crisis of the environment to be held next spring on every university campus across the Nation. The crisis is so imminent, in my opinion, that every university should set aside 1 day in the school year - the same day across the Nation - for the teach-in."

Senator Nelson then persuaded Republican Congressman Pete McCloskey, also interested in the advancement of the conservation movement, to serve as co-chair of the event. A young Harvard graduate student, Denis Hayes, read about Senator Nelson's proposal and asked to be involved in the effort. Hayes had been student body president and a campus activist at Standford University, in Congressman McCloskey's district in California. After meeting with the young man, Nelson asked him to drop out of Harvard and direct the effort to organize Earth Day across the United States. Hayes proceeded to build a national staff of 85 like-minded individuals to promote Earth Day events across the country.

The hard work paid off! On April 22nd, 1970, more than 20 million Americans participated in the first Earth Day teach-in. The success of the event is considered to have been a major factor in the creation of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the passage of the Clean Air, Clean Water, and Endangered Species Acts.


Earth Day History - Earth Day 1990
In 1990, Denis Hayes - coordinator of the first Earth Day in 1970 - was recruited by environmental leaders to organize another big effort. It was time to take Earth Day global!

As a result of this work, more than 200 million people in 141 countries worked together to bring more awareness to conservation issues. As a result of this effort, two years later, in 1992, the United Nations held an "Earth Summit" in Rio de Janeiro. In 1995, Senator Gaylord Nelson was presented with the Presidential Medal of Freedom for his work as the founder of Earth Day.


Earth Day History - Earth Day 2000
The approach of the millennium spurred another concentrated effort by Denis Hayes. Earth Day 2000 focused on global warming and the creation of clean energy sources. This is the first year that the internet played a big part in the activity, allowing the effort to reach hundreds of millions of people around the globe. More than 5,000 environmental groups in 184 countries participated.


In 2009, the United Nations designated April 22nd as "International Mother Earth Day." It is estimated that Earth Day is now observed by more than 500 million people each year.

Recommended Books
If you're interested in learning more about Earth Day and its finders, here are two books that you should find interesting:

The Man from Clear Lake: Earth Day Founder Senator Gaylord Nelson
Learn more about U.S. Senator Gaylor Nelson of Wisconsin, the founder of Earth Day.

Beyond Earth Day: Fulfilling the Promise
Along with his coauthors, including a foreward by Robert F. Kennedy Jr., Earth Day founder Gaylord Nelson discusses a wide variety of current environmental issues.

Discuss this article!
Please feel free to join the Biology forum discussion of this article here: Earth Day - What is Earth Day?

You can also follow this site on Facebook and Twitter:

Facebook Page - Biology at BellaOnline

Twitter - BioBellaOnline
This site needs an editor - click to learn more!

Add Earth+Day+%2D+What+is+Earth+Day%3F to Twitter Add Earth+Day+%2D+What+is+Earth+Day%3F to Facebook Add Earth+Day+%2D+What+is+Earth+Day%3F to MySpace Add Earth+Day+%2D+What+is+Earth+Day%3F to Del.icio.us Digg Earth+Day+%2D+What+is+Earth+Day%3F Add Earth+Day+%2D+What+is+Earth+Day%3F to Yahoo My Web Add Earth+Day+%2D+What+is+Earth+Day%3F to Google Bookmarks Add Earth+Day+%2D+What+is+Earth+Day%3F to Stumbleupon Add Earth+Day+%2D+What+is+Earth+Day%3F to Reddit




RSS | Related Articles | Editor's Picks Articles | Top Ten Articles | Previous Features | Site Map


For FREE email updates, subscribe to the Biology Newsletter


Past Issues


print
Printer Friendly
bookmark
Bookmark
tell friend
Tell a Friend
forum
Forum
email
Email Editor


Content copyright © 2014 by Deborah Watson-Novacek. All rights reserved.
This content was written by Deborah Watson-Novacek. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact BellaOnline Administration for details.

g


g features
Algae Blooms

Species Spotlight - Monarch Butterfly

Recycling

Archives | Site Map

forum
Forum
email
Contact

Past Issues
memberscenter


vote
Poetry
Daily
Weekly
Monthly
Less than Monthly



BellaOnline on Facebook
g


| About BellaOnline | Privacy Policy | Advertising | Become an Editor |
Website copyright © 2014 Minerva WebWorks LLC. All rights reserved.


BellaOnline Editor