Making Earth Day Meaningful

latest-1404-resolutionsEarth Day is not like other holidays — at least not on the surface. It serves neither the nation nor a religious community. Yet in another way, it is just the same. Its purpose is to shake us out of our complacency — that tendency to believe that the way things are is the way they were meant to be. It reminds us of what really matters and inspires us to bring our lives and the world more in line with what we value most.

Put another way, Earth Day is about remembrance and rebirth, as so many other holidays are, including those other Spring holidays, Passover and Easter. Earth Day reminds us that the Earth is not a “resource” to be exploited, but our home, and it asks us to rededicate ourselves to its stewardship.

So how will you rededicate yourself this year? What will you do differently?

I’ve pulled together an Earth Day Checklist with a number of significant, achievable changes you can make or may have already made. Do pause to take stock of your accomplishments first. You deserve the credit and it will bolster your confidence and determination to do yet more.

Happy Earth Day!

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4 Responses to Making Earth Day Meaningful

  1. Murray Bolesta April 17, 2014 at 11:57 pm #

    Unfortunately the earth is a resource that’s being utterly consumed; massive changes in attitudes across all latitudes are needed but are not on the horizon. I’m not confident :(

  2. James A. Singmaster, III April 19, 2014 at 10:43 am #

    To make Earth Day meaningful, the one and only meaningful action to call for is MAKING THE SUN OUR SOLE ENERGY-POWERR SOURCE!!!!!!!!! Nothing else will be meaningful.. This can be done as I hhave outlined in e-mails to many at NRDC. By getting that action we can eliminate all problems with N-power and fossil fuels; in fact, we can use the SUN’S energy to help reverse CC/GW and to clean up the messes from FFs and N-power!!!!!!!
    James Singmaster, III, Ph.D., Environmental Chemist, Ret, Davis, CA

  3. Marilyn Hempel April 22, 2014 at 2:43 pm #

    You have forgotten to mention the greatest gift we could give to the Earth — fewer people. It is not popular, but true: human overpopulation and overconsumption is causing the 6th Great extinction. I’m all in favor of making the small gestures — recycling, cloth bags, etc — and in making the large gestures — planting trees, going solar, etc. But at this late hour the huge gesture is need. Consider having 2 or fewer children. If you love children, that’s wonderful, adopt them. Support young women who choose to be child-free. Living more lightly starts with having fewer people.
    M Hempel, Editor, Population Press

    • Sheryl April 22, 2014 at 6:23 pm #

      Marilyn, I’m with you on a global level and have written about the overpopulation problem before (see http://thisgreenblog.com/2011/11/lets-put-overpopulation-back-on-the-agenda.html). But the U.S. fertility rate is actually below the replacement level right now, so Americans — for the time being — are doing their part. Only hope the lower fertility rate lasts — and that other countries follow suit. Sheryl