Wednesday, April 16, 2008

One (Earth) Day Isn't Enough

One of the best things to ever happen to the planet: Earth Day. According to Wikipedia, Earth Day was born in the Pacific Northwest back in 1969, with the idea of promoting conservation, preservation and care for the planet. With its’ early roots on college campuses, “Earth Day” is a bellwether event in bringing environmental issues to the front of the world’s newspapers and to the forefront of peoples’ minds.

Park systems, public service groups and activist organizations of all kinds get involved in Earth Day. It is a very good thing.

One of the worst things to ever happen to the planet: The day after Earth Day. An unfortunate byproduct of Earth Day is that, for some, it can create the illusion that a single day of stewardship is sufficient. That 1/365th of our time should be devoted to “supporting the cause” of environmental awareness or action. It's great that folks come out and volunteer... but it would be tragic if that single day of effort were to leave anyone with a false sense of accomplishment, or the idea that one day per year might be adequate to clean-up what needs cleaning.

Pardon my brief rant. And please don’t mistake the intentions of my remarks. It is important to celebrate Earth Day, and I’ll be doing it, too. But I encourage anyone and everyone to elevate their Earth Day frame of mind… to a lifetime of care and commitment.

© 2008 Mike D. Anderson, Crystal, MN.

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