|This rock we call home is such a magnificent place. We all know the Earth is an incredibly complex and vibrant ecosystem, where living organisms interact with each other and the environment to create the ideal conditions for life. Earth has it all. Sometimes it’s warm, sometimes it’s cold, there’s lots of water and lots of lands, but not too much of either. The Earth is actually quite perfect. And it’s in trouble. Which brings us to Earth Day 2020. This year earthday.org is focusing its 2020 Earth Day campaign on “CLIMATE ACTION” and so are we.
The enormous challenges — but also the vast opportunities — of acting on climate change have distinguished the issue as the most pressing topic for the 50th anniversary. Climate change represents the biggest challenge to the future of humanity and the life-support systems that make our world habitable.
At the end of 2020, nations will be expected to increase their national commitments to the 2015 Paris Agreement on climate change. The time is now for citizens to call for greater global ambition to tackle our climate crisis. Unless every country in the world steps up – and steps up with urgency and ambition — we are consigning current and future generations to a dangerous future.
Everything is connected. The food chain, from the tiniest organisms to the largest creatures, such as blue whales, keeps humans alive. When a species becomes endangered, it’s a sign that our ecosystem is slowly falling apart. Healthy ecosystems depend on plants and animal species. Without healthy forests, rivers, oceans and more, we will not have clean air, water, or land. If we allow our environment to become contaminated, we risk our own health.
Earth Day 2020 will be far more than a day. It must be a historic moment when citizens of the world rise up in a united call for the creativity, innovation, ambition, and bravery that we need to meet our climate crisis and seize the enormous opportunities of a zero-carbon future.
So, what can we do? The good news is that ordinary citizens can play a major role in helping wild animals by simply making the world a better place for them. Small acts really do have a big impact. Start being an advocate through your words and actions by trying some of these ideas:
Luckily, the Earth Day Network has you covered. The organization announced in March that it would celebrate the 50th anniversary of Earth Day with its first ever Digital Earth Day April 22.
“At Earth Day Network, the health and safety of volunteers and participants in Earth Day events is our top concern. Amid the recent outbreak, we encourage people to rise up but to do so safely and responsibly — in many cases, that means using our voices to drive action online rather than in person,” Earth Day Network President Kathleen Rogers said.
Here are three things you can do from the safety of your home to celebrate the Earth throughout April.
1. Join EARTHRISE
On Earth Day itself, the Earth Day Network is organizing 24 hours of “global digital mobilization” called EARTHRISE
“The coronavirus pandemic does not shut us down,” the organizers wrote. “Instead, it reminds us of what’s at stake in our fight for the planet. If we don’t demand change, our current state will become the new normal — a world where pandemics and extreme weather events span the globe, leaving already marginalized and vulnerable communities even more at risk.”
You can participate in using the hashtags #EarthDay2020 and #EARTHRISE.
2. Take the Earth Day Daily Challenge
You don’t have to wait for April 22 to start making a difference. The Earth Day Network is also organizing 22 daily challenges you can take to fight the climate crisis from lockdown.
The challenge began April 1
Yesterday’s challenge was to “compost creatively” if you can’t use all the food you brought home in your latest grocery store haul.
3. Be a Citizen Scientist
You don’t need a fancy laboratory or a white coat to be a scientist. All you need is a mobile device.
As of April 1, the Earth Challenge 2020 mobile app has been made available at the Android or Apple
Why does Earth Day matter now?
On Earth day, April 22, 2020, we will face two crises: One is immediate from a pandemic and the other is slowly building as a disaster for our climate.
We can, will, and must solve both challenges. The world was not prepared for a coronavirus. Leaders ignored hard science and delayed critical actions. We still have time to prepare — in every part of the world — for the climate crisis.
EARTHRISE is how we set a new global standard on Earth Day 2020. We must act together to say that global disaster must never happen again; we must not make the same mistakes twice.
This page has the tools for you to build towards a world-changing Earth Day. On its 50th anniversary, Earth Day will return to its roots from 1970: Placing environmental progress among the best ways to improve our world.
Thanks to heroic actions around the world, we will overcome and recover from the coronavirus. Life will return to normal, but we must not allow the return to business as usual. Our planet — our future — depends on it. Find inspiration here to take action, read other stories, and add your voice to the map. As we overcome this immediate crisis, we will tell the world that we are ready to solve the next one.
On the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, let’s remember that the smallest of changes can make a difference. We just need to commit to them and make them a part of our everyday lives.
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