Today, April 22, 2020 marks the 50 year anniversary of Earth Day.
Let’s face it, humans in quarantine has been great for our planet. Air pollution has dropped tremendously and some wildlife has returned to places it hasn’t been seen in years or even decades.
Other things have not been so great, like the increase in single use plastic such as disposable gloves and face masks……
Life in quarantine has made me realize many things. I really love human connection and touch, which I completely forgot about. I really love going to galleries and see art. I love Los Angeles and driving through the hills. I love sunsets! I miss my favorite restaurants and the small interactions with the people at my local coffee shop and supermarket. BUT the most important of all, I love and need to be out in nature for my mental and emotional well-being.
I can’t recall what week of quarantine it was, but I had to get out of my apartment as the walls seemed to be tumbling down on me. Walking through my neighborhood was not enough.
I decided to drive up Laurel Canyon and Mulholland to walk around because my regular hiking/running in nature spot is temporarily closed. On top of the hills, surrounded by green hills, trees, the open and wide sky and the beauty of it all brought me almost down to me knees. I felt my heart breathing again. It was a moment of deep gratitude and reference for this beautiful planet we call home.
Moving forward, it has become crystal clear once again I need nature and a healthy environment to stay sane. We all do! It was also a great reminder why I started Ad Vitam. I love the Earth! To me, Earth Day is every day, just as Thanksgiving should be every day.
The Launch of the Modern Environmental Movement
50 years ago the first Earth Day in 1970 marked the launching of the modern environmental movement. It was a collective response to environmental issues such as oil spills, air and water pollution. An estimated 20 million people in America alone took to the streets on behalf of the environment and demanded a new way forward for our planet.
As a result to the first Earth Day in 1970, the Clean Air, Clean Water and Endangered Species Acts were created, as well as the creation of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Many countries followed and adopted similar laws.
In 2016, the United Nations chose Earth Day as the day when the historic Paris Agreement on climate change was signed into force.
Earth Day continues to hold major international significance and has become now the planet’s largest civic event.
This year’s theme for Earth Day is climate action. According to many environmental leaders and scientists, climate change represents the biggest challenge to the future of humanity and the life-support systems that make our world habitable.
We need innovation, creativity, ambition and courage to seize the massive opportunity for sustainable living on this planet. Much has been accomplished since 1970 but we have so much more ahead of us in terms of sustainable development.
This is a good moment to reflect on our commitment and contribution we want to make to the collective, the whole. Climate change makes us global citizens because it is happening worldwide. Right now COVID-19 teaches us a valuable lesson in what it means “to be in this together”. No racial or social status is exempt from this experience.
Due to the pandemic, over the 24 hours of Earth Day, the 50th anniversary will fill the digital landscape with global conversations, performances, calls to action, video teach-ins and more. If you want to tune in, go to https://www.earthday.org/earth-day-live/ to check out the global program.
I’ll go back to the top of Laurel Canyon and hug and kiss a tree.