Every year on April 22, Earth Day marks the anniversary of the birth of the modern environmental movement.
Earth Day was founded in 1970 as a day of education about environmental issues, More than 20 million people around the U.S. gathered together holding rallies, demonstrations and participating in activities to promote a clean and safe living environment. Children, adults, students young and old marched on government institutions pushing for new legislation to protect the Earth on local, state and national levels.
As 1990 approached, a group of environmental leaders approached Denis Hayes to once again organize another major campaign for the planet. This time, Earth Day went global, mobilizing 200 million people in 141 countries and lifting
Although Earth Day has become mainstream, surveys show that environmentalism may be stumbling. According to recent Gallup polls, 42 percent of Americans believe that the dangers of climate change are exaggerated, and less than half say that protection of the environment should be given priority over energy production.
Today, Earth Day is widely recognized as the largest secular observance in the world, marked by more than a billion people every year as a day of action to change human behavior and create global, national and local policy changes.
Now, the fight for a clean environment continues with increasing urgency, as the ravages of climate change become more and more apparent every day.
As the awareness of our climate crisis grows, so does civil society mobilization, which is reaching a fever pitch across the globe today.