So today is Earth Day, and just two years shy of its fifty anniversary (as the first Earth Day was April 22, 1970). For the approximate two hundred years prior to the first march to protest the treatment of the Earth, the industrial revolution had been going on, and industries had been taking off and doing what they basically wanted to with little regulation.
Lets take a brief look at how Earth Day came to be. A senator from Wisconsin, Gaylord Nelson, who had an idea for a “national teach-in on the environment, spearheaded the movement”. He managed to land bipartisan support for the idea, and on April 22, 1970 “20 million Americans took to the streets, parks, and auditoriums to demonstrate for a healthy, sustainable environment in coast-to-coast rallies” (earthday.org/about/the-history-of-earth-day). By the end of the year, the bipartisan support in Congress led to the creation of the EPA, and the passage of three vital environmental acts: the Clean Air, the Clean Water, and the Endangered Species Acts.
Since then, the movement has gone global, with millions of people in countries on every continent lifting environmental issues onto the global stage. Things had been progressing at a good pace for starting to reverse the harm that had been done to the planet—several species were brought back from the brink of extinction (Bald Eagle, California condor, and others), though some are still listed as endangered—they’re not critically endangered. Vast areas of rainforests and oceans have been set aside as nature preserves, saving untold number of undiscovered animals and plants from having to be listed on the endangered species list. Read More