April 23, 2019

Earth Day

By John Worlock, Member of Save Our Canyons


Monday, April 22 will be the 49th Anniversary of Earth Day, and we hope you have some plans for that celebration.  My personal plan is to take a lawn chair and perhaps an umbrella and go sit where I can listen to the birds and the burble of Mill Creek, watching the green leafy things grow and reach for the sun. 

 You, however, can do much more.  You can get up on your hind legs and take yourself deep into one of our extremely accessible Wilderness Areas.  Allow me to remind you how fortunate we are to live with an arm’s reach of three Wasatch wildernesses:  the Lone Peak, the Twin Peaks and the Mount Olympus.

If you want more than a solo celebration, go to the internet and search for a local celebratory activity that suits your fancy.

The first Earth Day, on April 22, 1970, sprang from a suggestion of a visionary politician, Senator Gaylord Nelson of Wisconsin.  He had struggled through the 1960’ s to get Congress to take ecological concerns more seriously, and so he proposed a day when citizens, nationwide, would gather to raise awareness of environmental problems.  There would be teach-ins, modeled on the college-campus activism of the 1960’s.

The idea took flight and the first Earth Day more or less organized itself nationwide.  An estimated 20 million Americans gathered to confront the ecological troubles in their cities and states and even the planet.  That event launched a decade of environmental legislation, including the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Acts, and the National Wild and Scenic Rivers Act.

Earth Day has bloomed and blossomed and now involves over a billion people in virtually all the nations of the Planet Earth.  It continues to grow even as the environmental winds blow sometimes hot and sometimes cold.  It is even more important during those cold seasons, to express our concern for the livability of our locale and the viability of our planet.

Within the USA, the environmental winds are currently kind of chilly, so let’s celebrate Earth Day, and try to heat ‘em up a bit!