By Kalpana Palkhiwala : Forty years after the first Earth Day, the world is in greater peril than ever. While climate change is the greatest challenge of our time, it also presents the greatest opportunity – an unprecedented opportunity to build a healthy, prosperous, clean energy economy now and for the future. Earth Day 2010 can be a turning point to advance climate policy, energy efficiency, renewable energy and green jobs. Earth Day Network is galvanizing millions who make personal commitments to sustainability. Earth Day 2010 is a pivotal opportunity for individuals, corporations and governments to join together and create a global green economy. Join the more than one billion people in 190 countries that are taking action for Earth Day.
This is a time to remember the environmental challenges facing us. And opportunity to live better lives, help the planet, and build a strong economy. One need not choose to have either a healthy environment or a strong economy – one can have both. While many say that steps to solve environmental challenges are too costly, solving these problems Presents a great opportunity for businesses to thrive by providing cleaner energy, greener buildings, efficient transportation, and less wasteful ways of living. The fate of the environment is our own fate.
Earth Day is the, most widely celebrated international event and provides a chance to remember what an amazing planet we live on. The only planet in our solar system teeming with incredible biodiversity. Learning about earth, which includes oceans, protecting the biodiversity, atmosphere etc., is what Earth Day is all about. People all over the world celebrate and make efforts to protect plants, animals and clean up the Earth we live in.
On 22nd April 1970, Earth Day marked the beginning of the modern environmental movement and hence forth it is celebrated on this day every year. Countries celebrate Earth Day in different ways, by cleaning the city, releasing stamps, arranging various kinds of competitions among children, educating the masses about earth resources and its sustainable use through leaflets etc,.
The Ministry of Earth Sciences has proposed to celebrate the event by organizing activities on the theme -“ Save Earth (covering land, ocean and atmosphere)”.Various other topics such as – Green house effect, Ozone hole, its causes and effects, Global warming, Sustainable use of natural resources, Impact of Climate change on Indian monsoon, Deforestation and afforestation its significance, Ocean resources ( Living & non living resources ), Energy resources (conventional & non-conventional energy resources), Desalination, Tsunami Early Warning System, Ocean Technology, Marine instruments, Polar Science and Earthquake studies have also been proposed for the day’s celebration.
Schools have also been invited to involve students in different activities like essay competition, drawing/painting, poster making, tree plantation, writing slogans on preserving nature, quiz competition and others.
Earth day, inispires all to share the value of protecting the environment by commiting ourselves to:
§ Using less water by taking showers instead of baths, fixing leaks, turning off the tap while brushing and buying efficient fixtures by looking for the WaterSense label.
§ Saving electricity by buying Energy Star products, and changing bulbs to compact fluorescents.
§ Reusing and recycling products.
§ Testing homes for Radon a naturally occurring, odourless gas that can seep into houses and cause lung cancer.
§ Commuting by using public transportation, carpool, walk, or bike whenever possible to reduce air pollution and save on fuel costs.
§ Using chemicals safely by locking up pesticides, paints, and cleaners where children can’t reach them.
§ Checking on local air quality.
§ eCycling old computer, DVD player, or other electronic goods. This helps keep hazardous substances out of landfils.