April 22nd, 1970: Millions of concerned citizens rally in the streets to protest over a century’s worth of industrial development, which had caused a drastic rise in air pollution and massive decline in biodiversity. Ecological awareness mounts across the United States, urging President Nixon to make a change.
July 1970: President Nixon and the U.S. Congress create the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and enact laws like the Clean Water Act and the Endangered Species Act. The Clean Water Act establishes a simple structure for monitoring and maintaining pollution into U.S. waters while the Endangered Species Act, a response to biodiversity decline, protects the ecosystems and lives of endangered species.
Today, Earth Day spans the globe with an estimated one billion people in countries around the world participating in marches, tree plantings, and community service among other things.
According to Earth Day Network’s (EDN) website, Earth Day 2018 will focus on the negative impact of plastic pollution in “our oceans, water, and wildlife, and the growing body of evidence that decomposing plastics are creating serious global problems.” However, this is not EDN’s first time promoting their initiative to end plastic pollution. For years prior, EDN promoted their campaign to encourage recycling, promote the use of natural alternatives to fossil fuels, and influence a positive change in our behavior concerning plastics.
EDN is raising awareness for Earth Day 2018 by leading several grassroots movements, encouraging people around the world to be sterner on their local governments concerning control and cleanup of plastic, and inspiring people to take responsibility for their part in plastic pollution.
To get involved or donate to the cause, visit: https://www.earthday.org/.