Celebrated annually on April 22, the very first Earth Day took place in 1970 when Gaylord Nelson, a United States senator from Wisconsin, organized a national demonstration to raise awareness about environmental issues. About twenty million Americans took part in the first Earth Day celebration, holding rallies and events across the country. By the end of that year, the U.S. government had created the Environmental Protection Agency.
In 1990, Earth Day went global and was celebrated by more than 140 countries around the world. This worldwide recognition of Earth Day helped to greatly increase recycling efforts across the planet. Now, more than thirty years later, Earth Day is celebrated by over one billion people in 190 countries.
People of all ages can pitch in and do their part to help keep the planet a clean and happy place to live. Wondering what kids can do? Here are a few easy ideas you can try right away.
- Remind your parents to bring their reusable shopping bags along when going to the grocery store
- Make sure any items you put in the recycling bin are rinsed clean of food residue
- Turn off the faucet to save water while brushing your teeth
- Check out materials from the library to learn more about Earth Day, reducing, reusing, and recycling. Below are some suggested titles from our children's nonfiction collection.