Celebrating the 50th anniversary of Earth Day

Celebrating the 50th anniversary of Earth Day

April 22nd marks the 50th anniversary of Earth Day 2020, an annual event celebrated around the world to demonstrate support for environmental protection.

The idea for the event originates from peace activist John McConnell, who proposed a day to honour the Earth in 1969 at a UNESCO Conference in San Francisco.

Since then, according to the Earth Day Network, “1 billion individuals have been mobilised for the future of the planet and there are more than 75 000 organisations working to drive positive action”.

Unfortunately, Earth Day 2020 celebrations are limited this year to our immediate and virtual surroundings, due to the coronavirus pandemic. Still, even though we cannot celebrate our planet with physical community events such as tree planting or cleanups, there are still numerous things you can do to protect the planet at home.

What can you do to make a difference?

Here are just some of the tips to make a difference on Earth day and every day of the year:

  • Reduce, reuse and recycle. Cut down on what you throw away. Follow the three “R’s” to conserve natural resources and landfill space.
  • Stop using disposable plastics, especially single-use plastics such as bottles, bags, plates and cutlery.
  • Stream an eco-documentary on the Discovery Channel or Netflix or visit EarthxFilm, where you can view exclusive features and short films on environmental issues.
  • Clean your house with environmentally-friendly, non-toxic cleaning products.
  • Buy organic food to keep your body and the environment free of toxic pesticides.
  • Replace inefficient incandescent light bulbs with efficient CFLs or LEDs.
  • Turn off and unplug electronics you’re not using. This includes turning off your computer at night.
  • Make sure the paper and tissues you buy are made from 100% post-consumer recycled material or paper.
  • Sort through your inboxes and delete any unwanted emails to save on server space and unsubscribe from newsletters wherever possible.
  • Recycle batteries from electronic equipment and invest in a rechargeable battery kit.

Happy Earth day!