Happy Earth Day from the Gatlinburg Daily Post

It seems that the planet and the effects of global warming are at the forefront of the minds of scientists and citizens across the world. We are looking for better and more dependable ways to continue the lives we lead while not harming our home. Today is Sunday April 22, otherwise known as Earth Day! Earth Day is a day that many use to recognize the issues of the planet and do their part to help.

How did Earth Day get started? Since the founding of our country, many indulged in industrial and agricultural progress. Most of the time this meant building factories and machines that emitted gas and other chemicals, without any knowledge of the consequences. Over time, the effects of this progress became beyond noticeable. By the 1960’s environmental issues were becoming prevalent to the American consciousness with books like Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring. Environmental tragedies of the time were making the problem a hot button issue.

American lawmakers suddenly became aware that they needed to do something about the environmental issues plaguing their homes and communities. In 1962, Senator Gaylord Nelson was determined to convince the federal government that the planet was at risk. Nelson was inspired by the anti-Vietnam teach-ins that were occurring at college campuses across the United States. Suddenly, he began to envision a grass roots movement for an environmental demonstration.

Nelson used this idea to launch his Earth Day concept in Seattle in the fall of 1969. Through Earth Day talks, the American people finally had a forum to express their concerns about what was happening to the water, land, and air. People would respond to the call of Nelson in abundance.

On April 22 of that year, many rallies were held in cities across the United States. Earth Day had its desired effect, and by the following year many Americans found themselves more educated about environmental issues and wanted to make preservation a priority. This would lead to several environmental acts being passed through the 1970’s.

Earth Day would continue to grow throughout the following decades with United States leaders’ partnering with other world leaders to help create coalitions for preservation and protection of the planet. Today, these issues continue to be an important topic of discussion and controversy. More restrictions and regulations will continue in the years to come as we continue to see the effects of chemicals on the planet. The impact of the push for environmental awareness is global and readily seen today. Last year, the UK went 24 hours without burning coal. Earlier this week, the country managed to achieve 55 hours, and the efficiency of green technology is increasing every day.

If you are wondering how you can celebrate Earth Day, there are several ideas for you to try. Many spend the day by volunteering within their community in service projects at local parks. You can also plant a tree or take time to clean up an area that might have a bit of litter. Spend the day thinking about and trying to help the planet we all populate. We were only given one habitable planet in our solar system, and it’s probably a good idea to band together to try our best to take care of it! Happy Earth Day from all of us at the Gatlinburg Daily Post!

Source: Elizabeth Lane, Gatlinburg Daily Post Staff Writer