Mother Nature, such a fascinating, yet mysterious creation. Her complexity and consistency are indeed evidence of a greater power. This green Earth was created by God and given as a gift to all who inhabit it. We must consider the well-being of our planet, keeping God’s gift in order, as it was first received. We must have reverence for all of God’s creations so gracefully bestowed unto us, reclaiming our environment and enriching Earth Day.
April 22, 2020, marks the 50th anniversary of the globally-celebrated environmental holiday Earth Day. Annually, individuals concerned for the Earth’s well-being gather together to support our planet and its ever-changing environment, establishing a better life for us, and a better way for our world.
Each year, you can find numerous listings for environmental festivities affiliated with Earth Day (though mostly virtual this year). A variety of organizations and community action programs have taken it upon themselves to come to the aid of our malnourished world. Organizations such as The Earth Day Network (EDN) offer online resources, giving individuals the chance to share in the restoration of the Earth and its environment. The Earth Day Network supports and encourages young students, potential futurists, to take part in the “Green Generation,” whose primary purpose is to ensure our environmental prosperity and secure our survival.
The Earth Day Network’s campaign “The Green Generation” was launched in 2009, awarding students who have excelled in environmental restoration. The Green Generation consists of normal people who want to make a real difference in the world. Anyone can become an environmentalist. Interested individuals can start by checking out Earth Day Network’s web page. Members can actually help the Green Generation even without making crazy changes to their lifestyle! Committed consumers can simply buy ‘green products’ instead of their environmentally harmful counterparts.
For example, try buying locally grown produce instead of produce that must be transported from far away, contributing to carbon dioxide emissions. Even worse, this produce must be chemically treated to stay fresh through transport. The impact of Earth Day has yielded amazing results, offering new and obtainable jobs, a much-needed boost to the weakened economy. These jobs are generally oriented around the engineering of new and innovative technologies. Also emerging are new positions for scientists, researchers, environmental analysts, renewable energy plant managers, associated plant employees, construction workers, architects, and many others. These are just a fraction of the enriching opportunities developing because of an increasing awareness of the needs of the environment. According to the Environmental and Energy Institute, “Energy efficiency now employs eight million individuals. The renewable resource-oriented plants are now rising daily to total 450,000 (employees).” Associated EDN resources reported, “Green Jobs are a win, win, win, for the workers and the environment.”
The reach of Earth Day has come a long way from its humble beginnings. In a speech to a small Seattle conservation group in 1969, U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson announced his idea for a nationwide day to teach about the environment. Senator Nelson tasked Denis Hayes with organizing the first nationwide environmental protest, and on April 22, 1970, twenty million Americans publicly demonstrated in support of a healthy and sustainable environment.
The first Earth Day was received with unprecedented support from opposing groups; Republicans and Democrats, rich and poor, urbanites and country folks alike came together in support of the environment. Lasting effects from this first outpouring of environmental activism can still be felt today. The Environmental Protection Agency, as well as the Clean Air, Clean Water, and Endangered Species Act were all created in reaction to Earth Day 1970.
In 1990, Hayes was asked to bring Earth Day to a global audience. That year, Earth Day went global, with over 200 million people from 141 countries showing support for environmental awareness. Since then, Earth Day celebrations have brought attention to various aspects of environmental awareness, from recycling to global warming to clean energy. On April 22 this year, join the multitudes as they celebrate fifty years of working towards a healthier planet.
“And God blessed them, and God said unto them, ‘Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the seas, and over the fowl of the air,and over every living thing that moves upon the earth.’” –Genesis 1:28 (NKJ)
God’s plan for us as Christians and unbelievers alike is to meditate upon his word, seek him in prayer and much more. We must join together and make a true change in our environment, restoring and rebuilding a better world for us and for Christ.