Earth Day being observed today
India Blooms News Service
New Delhi, Apr 22 (IBNS): Earth Day, a day to increase awareness and appreciation of the Earth's natural environment, is being observed around the planet on Sunday with this year marking the 42nd anniversary of the event.
This year, the day, first modelled on teach-ins that anti-war activists were holding on college campuses in the West, is expected to return back to its activist roots with organisers reviving the 1970s theme "Mobilize the Earth" for 2012.
"We felt mobilization as a concept was really critical, because it helps people understand that they can actually get going, they actually can get something done," said Kathleen Rogers, president of the Washington, D.C.-based Earth Day Network
However, after decades of both celebrating and crusading for the environment, many are becoming frustrated with the failure of governments and citizens alike to take stronger steps toward protecting and preserving the environment.
Earth Day 2012, thus, activists say aims to provide people with the opportunity to unite their voices in a call for a sustainable future and direct them toward quantifiable outcomes by inciting a ‘climatic Arab Spring’.
“Earth Day helps build awareness about issues that impact our common heritage – the Earth,” said Karuna A. Singh, Country Director – India, Earth Day Network.
“Once people are made aware of the harmful outcomes of global warming and the resultant climate change, and they realise how seriously climate change will impact not just their lives, but the lives of their children, and grandchildren as well, they will definitely do their bit to reduce the levels of greenhouse gas emissions as well as their carbon footprints,” she said.
More than 1 billion people now participate in Earth Day activities each year, making it the largest civic observance in the world, Singh said.
Last year, the 41st anniversary of Earth Day in 2011 was observed in cities around India, including New Delhi, Kolkata, Hyderabad, and Mumbai through commemorative Mother Earth concerts, community service, and tree-planting projects.
Events were organised in 170 cities and districts in each of the 29 states. Several thousand Indians participated, a majority of whom pledged an act of green to help reduce carbon emission and promote sustainability, energising the “new” global environmental movement.
Earth Day 2012 in India aims to activate over a million people to participate in local, regional and country-wide projects.
(Photo courtesy: earthday.org)