The upcoming April 22 Earth Day celebration and its focus on sustainable development offer clear reminders to people all over the world of the global shift needed to protect our planet and its precious ecosystems for future generations. This day comes less than two months before the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20) being held in Brazil in June.
The modern day environmental movement began with Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring in 1962. Carson’s monumental book awakened public opinion on the unsustainable environmental trend being perpetrated in the world. Silent Spring served as a catalyst for the modern day environmental movement, propelling environmental policy into the political agenda. Gaylord Nelson, a US Senator from Wisconsin, further bolstered this widespread public momentum through the creation of Earth Day in 1970. This grassroots movement ignited opinion that there must be measures taken to combat environmental degradation. The success of Earth Day, which is held annually on 22 April, is owed to the enthusiasm that the grassroots movement produced.
The theme this year is Mobilize the Earth, and encourages people to take action and make their voices heard on sustainable development initiatives. Green Cross conducts numerous projects that mobilize communities around the world, including providing access to clean water, educating children on sustainability, promoting smart energy alternatives and urging community action on disaster risk reduction. A special Earth Day photo album is available to view here on our website, capturing some moments of “mobilization” through Green Cross projects.
Green Cross International will be celebrating Earth Day this year with other like-minded civil society organizations by taking part in the Geneva Environment Network/Antinia Foundation event, “Mobilize, unite and celebrate around Earth Day”, on Thursday 19 April at Environment House. Several environmental organizations will come together to learn about and discuss the work of organizations such as Green Cross, The Gold Standard and The Changing Oceans Expedition. A series of short films and presentations will be given, and Green Cross will be speaking on their most recent activities. Please click here to register.