Justice and Peace

April 22 Earth Day

The theme for Earth Day 2019 is ‘Protect Our Species’. It aims to draw attention to the rapid extinction of species across the world, which is directly linked to human activity which causes climate change, deforestation and pollution.
The Earth Day Network  https://www.earthday.org/– which runs Earth Day – says 40 per cent of the world’s 11,000 bird species are in decline and 75 per cent of the world’s coral reefs are under stress. It is encouraging its supporters to take individual actions to slow the extinction rate, including going vegetarian or stopping their use of pesticides and herbicides.
HISTORY
The idea for a national day to focus on the environment came to Earth Day founder Gaylord Nelson, then a U.S. Senator from Wisconsin, after witnessing the ravages of the 1969 massive oil spill in Santa Barbara, California. Inspired by the student anti-war movement, he realized that if he could infuse that energy with an emerging public consciousness about air and water pollution, it would force environmental protection onto the national political agenda. Senator Nelson announced the idea for a “national teach-in on the environment” to the national media; persuaded Pete McCloskey, a conservation-minded Republican Congressman, to serve as his co-chair; and recruited Denis Hayes from Harvard as national coordinator. Hayes built a national staff of 85 to promote events across the land. April 22, falling between Spring Break and Final Exams, was selected as the date.
EARTH DAY TODAY
As the millennium approached, Hayes agreed to spearhead another campaign, this time focused on global warming and a push for clean energy. With 5,000 environmental groups in a record 184 countries reaching out to hundreds of millions of people, Earth Day 2000 combined the big-picture feistiness of the first Earth Day with the international grassroots activism of Earth Day 1990. Earth Day 2000 used the power of the Internet to organize activists, but also featured a drum chain that traveled from village to village in Gabon, Africa. Hundreds of thousands of people gathered on the National Mall in Washington, DC for a First Amendment Rally. Earth Day 2000 sent world leaders the loud and clear message that citizens around the world wanted quick and decisive action on global warming and clean energy.
Much like 1970, Earth Day 2010 came at a time of great challenge for the environmental community. Climate change deniers, well-funded oil lobbyists, reticent politicians, a disinterested public, and a divided environmental community all contributed to the narrative—cynicism versus activism. Despite these challenges, Earth Day prevailed and Earth Day Network reestablished Earth Day as a relevant, powerful focal point. Earth Day Network brought 250,000 people to the National Mall for a Climate Rally, launched the world’s largest environmental service project—A Billion Acts of Green®–introduced a global tree planting initiative that has since grown into The Canopy Project, and engaged 75,000 partners in 192 countries in observing Earth Day.
Earth Day had reached into its current status as the largest secular observance in the world, celebrated by more than a billion people every year, and a day of action that changes human behavior and provokes policy changes. Today, the fight for a clean environment continues with increasing urgency, as the ravages of climate change become more manifest every day.
Visit the Justice and Peace Prayers for a 2019 Water Day Prayer.https://www.holyunionsisters.org/justice-and-peace/justice-prayers/
RESOURCES
Reducing our Carbon Footprint
One way people can help the planet is by reducing their carbon footprint. But what is your carbon footprint? Put simply, your carbon footprint is the total amount of greenhouse gases you produce directly and indirectly through everyday activities, such as driving a car or turning on the lights.
Carbon footprints are usually measured in equivalent tons of carbon dioxide, or CO2.
But why is it bad to produce carbon dioxide? It’s a greenhouse gas that contributes to global warming. Methane and ozone are other gases that are produced during day-to-day activities and contribute to global warming as well. They are also part of your carbon footprint.
Click on this link to learn how you can reduce your carbon footprint.
One way people can help the planet is by reducing their carbon footprint. But what is your carbon footprint? Put simply, your carbon footprint is the total amount of greenhouse gases you produce directly and indirectly through everyday activities, such as driving a car or turning on the lights.
Carbon footprints are usually measured in equivalent tons of carbon dioxide, or CO2.
But why is it bad to produce carbon dioxide? It’s a greenhouse gas that contributes to global warming. Methane and ozone are other gases that are produced during day-to-day activities and contribute to global warming as well. They are also part of your carbon footprint.
Click on the link below to see what your carbon footprint is.
https://www.carbonfootprint.com/individuals.html 
50 EARTH DAY ACTIVITIES FOR KIDS
https://tinkerlab.com/fifty-earth-day-activities/