Earth Day provides the opportunity for positive actions and results.
First launched as an environmental awareness event in the United States in 1970, Earth Day (April 22) is celebrated as the birth of the environmental movement.
Earth Day is a powerful catalyst for change. The first Earth Day, spearheaded by Wisconsin Governor Gaylord Nelson and Harvard University student Denis Hayes, involved 20 million participants in teach-ins that addressed decades of environmental pollution. The event inspired the US Congress to pass clean air and water acts, and establish the Environmental Protection Agency to research and monitor environmental issues and enforce environmental laws.
In 1990, two million Canadians joined 200 million people in 141 nations in celebrating the first International Earth Day. In many countries, the global event brought pressure on heads of state to take part in the UN Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro to address issues such as climate change and the world wide loss of species.
In Canada, Earth Day has grown into Earth Week and even Earth Month to accommodate the profusion of events and projects. They range from large public events, such as Victoria’s Earth Walk (5,000 participants), Edmonton’s Earth Day Festival at Hawrelak Park (30,000 participants), and Oakville, Ontario’s Waterways Clean-up (2,000 participants) to the thousands of small, private events staged by schools, employee groups and community groups.
Source Earth Day Canada