Endeavors to ‘restore our earth’
EARTH is the primary source of living. But now, it undergoes climate changes mainly caused by human activities. Basing on the Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) stated in its “Global Climate Change: Vital Signs of the Planet” article in its website that there is more than 95% possibility that human activities have warmed the planet for over the past 50 years.
Hence, people must urgently act on saving the planet. For Earth Day 2021, earthday.org banners the theme “Restore Our Earth”. Focusing on natural processes, emerging green technologies, and innovative thinking to restore the ecosystems, “the theme rejects the notion that mitigation or adaptation are the only ways to address climate change,” the organization said in its website.
This year’s 51st Earth Day celebration sustains the purpose of the first environmental movement in 1970.
“Earth Day 1970 gave a voice to an emerging public consciousness about the state of our planet,” earthday.org said. In 1990, Earth Day began to be a global event, mobilizing 200 million people in 141 countries and lifting environmental issues onto the world stage.
“By tapping into some of the learnings, outcomes, and legacy of the first Earth Day, earthday.org is building a cohesive, coordinated, diverse movement, one that goes to the very heart of what earthday.org and Earth Day are all about — empowering individuals with the information, the tools, the messaging and the communities needed to make an impact and drive change,” earthday.org shared.
The organization looks forward to contributing to the active progress to ‘Restore Our Earth’. “We must see every country rapidly raise their ambition across all climate issues — and that must include climate education which would lead to a green jobs-ready workforce, a green consumer movement, and an educated and civically engaged citizenry around the world,” said earthday.org President Kathleen Rogers in a statement.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, most Earth Day celebrations this year happen in the virtual world.
Earthday.org is conducting a three-day climate action.
The celebration began on April 20 through a global youth climate summit led by Earth Uprising, collaborating with My Future My Voice, OneMillionOfUs, and hundreds of young climate activists. On the same day, The Hip Hop Caucus and its partners presented the virtual summit, “We Shall Breathe”, which sought to examine climate and environmental justice. Employing a racial justice framework, it aimed to correlate the climate crisis with the issues like the pandemic, pollution, poverty, and police brutality.
Yesterday, April 21, Education International led the “Teach for the Planet: Global Education Summit”, a multilingual virtual event that featured renowned activists from every continent. It focused on the fundamental part of educators in fighting climate change and highlighting the need for transformative climate education.
Today, April 22, the organization will have its second Earth Day Live digital event, which will include workshops, panel discussions, and special performances focusing on the ‘Restore Our Earth’ theme. Among the topics are climate and environmental literacy, climate restoration technologies, reforestation efforts, and more.
Aside from earthday.org, other organizations also show support for Earth Day 2021.
National Geographic held its virtual celebration, “Earth Day Eve 2021”, yesterday. It featured music acts, special appearances, and inspiring stories; all of which reveled their shared love for the planet.
From April 21 to 24, NASA is hosting a virtual event to celebrate Earth Day 2021. It features live presentations by NASA scientists and interactive chats with Earth Science experts. It also offers live talks, games, videos, and downloadable posters and books.
In the Philippines, the Climate Change Commission will also air the 42nd episode of “Stories for a Better Normal: Pandemic and Climate Change Pathways,” with the topic, “The Single-Use Plastics Problem: Perspective from Policymakers” today, April 22, via Facebook Live. The event will gather policymakers to share updates regarding the discussions on the bill to ban single-use plastics nationwide.
The Department of Education is also holding its virtual Earth Day celebration with the theme, “PINASiglang Mundo” from April 20 to 22. It will also launch the KalikHasan! Likha at Lakas ng Kabataan para sa Kalikasan, a creative sourcebook on the use of theater for climate education and action.
Everyone can also participate in celebrating Earth Day. Good Housekeeping lists ecofriendly lifestyle changes a person can adapt to help save the planet. Actions include reusing some items, purchasing environmentally-friendly products, and reducing daily water and energy consumption among others. “Earth Day comes once a year, but these lifestyle changes could be beneficial for the other 364 days, as well as years to come,” the article stated.
Earthday.org reminds that to ‘Restore Our Earth’ will depend on everyone: “We all need a healthy Earth to support our jobs, livelihoods, health and survival, and happiness. A healthy planet is not an option — it is a necessity.” —