Tag Archives: Earth Day

On Earth Day, Trump Gives Giant Pro-Capitalism ‘Middle Finger’ to Entire Planet

And so at least a few people gave it right back.

By Common Dreams. Published 4-22-2018

In Trump’s statement released by White House on Sunday, the president said, “We know that it is impossible for humans to flourish without clean air, land, and water. We also know that a strong, market-driven economy is essential to protecting these resources.” (Photo: Instagram/@jaaawsh)

In a giant “middle finger” to the planet on Earth Day, President Donald Trump on Sunday put out a statement in which he called for an even deeper evisceration of environmental protections as he claimed a “market-based economy” was essential to protecting natural resources and also reaffirmed his commitment to “removing unnecessary and harmful regulations that restrain economic growth.”

As experts and environmentalists have detailed ad nauseam, Trump—with the dedicated help from his EPA administrator Scott Pruitt—has been relentless, if not consistently successful, in destroying environmental protections and undermining any and all quality efforts designed to protect the nation’s air, water, and natural beauty. In addition, the president has become the leader of a Republican Party that continues its cynical denial of the threat posed by global warming and the associated climate crisis.  Continue reading

Share

In Photos: Scientists Worldwide Fight Back Against Anti-Science Trump Agenda

From Washington, D.C., to Brisbane, Australia, over 600 marches around the world showcased the global resistance to President Donald Trump’s war on science

By Nika Knight, staff writer for Common Dreams. Published 4-22-2017

An estimated 10,000 people took part in the March for Science in Berlin, Germany, on Saturday. (Photo: Stand With CEU/Twitter)

Tens of thousands are celebrating Earth Day by marching Saturday against President Donald Trump’s ongoing attacks on science, in an unprecedented global uprising of scientists against the anti-science Trump administration.

With demonstrations on six continents, there was even a (small) march on the North Pole: Continue reading

Share

Recycling Earth Day

At a UNESCO conference in San Francisco in October, 1969, longtime activist John McConnell proposed a global holiday to celebrate Earth’s life and beauty, to advance peace, and to alert people about the need for preserving and renewing the threatened ecological balances upon which all life on Earth depends. . Yesterday marked the 46th celebration of McConnell’s vision; we call it Earth Day.

Earth Day flag. By John McConnell (flag designer) NASA (Earth photograph) SiBr4 (flag image) [Public domain or Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Earth Day flag. By John McConnell (flag designer) NASA (Earth photograph) SiBr4 (flag image) [Public domain or Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

McConnell’s original proposal called for Earth Day to be celebrated on the first day of spring. Indeed, the first Earth Day celebration was held March 21, 1970 in San Francisco. Gaylord Nelson, a former US Senator from Wisconsin, founded a second Earth Day on April 22 as an environmental teach-in.

Two thousand colleges and universities, roughly ten thousand primary and secondary schools, and hundreds of communities across the United States participated in the event that year. These days, Earth Day is an international event, and is celebrated in more than 192 countries each year. Continue reading

Share

Human Need vs. Human Greed

Photo by Kelley Kossan, copyright 2012. All rights reserved.

Photo by Kelley Kossan, copyright 2012. All rights reserved. Used by permission,

“They paved paradise and they put up a parking lot…” — Joni Mitchell, Big Yellow Taxi

I remember as a child the fight my grandfather had when an interstate highway was routed through his farmland. Southeastern Minnesota was rich in agriculture at that time, and the planned route would cut directly through his best acreage for crops. It was not pastureland, as the reports the highway department filed stated, so the eminent domain fight began. By the time it was over, my grandfather was paid less than his land was worth. The route was not changed, and it was not long after that time that my grandfather’s farm was no longer viable.

When you are on this highway traveling east on the area that used to be his farm, it now looks barren. It used to have hay and alfalfa fields that secured the soil and prevented erosion. We used to hunt these fields for pheasant in the fall, and deer would graze in them.

What is a national park worth? Clean water? Breathable air? Trees, birds, fish, abundant wildlife, nature’s glory? To many like myself, they are worth more than a corporation’s profits or a politician’s re-election. They are the future for our world, just as our children. And just as our children, they are equally fragile and our responsibility to protect.

When it comes to environment against corporations, landowners against developers, the winner is almost always someone’s bottom line. Corporations choose where they want to build, cities accommodate their requests by condemning homes or city parks. Arizona was attempting to push through bills to allow mining in the Grand Canyon before public outrage caused them to retract them. Imagine this in every national or state park across the country.

Photo by Berit from Redhill/Surrey, UK [CC-BY-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Photo by Berit from Redhill/Surrey, UK [CC-BY-2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

On the 22nd of April, 1970, 20 million Americans took to the streets, parks, and auditoriums to demonstrate for a healthy, sustainable environment in massive coast-to-coast rallies. Thousands of colleges and universities organized protests against the deterioration of the environment. Groups that had been fighting against oil spills, polluting factories and power plants, raw sewage, toxic dumps, pesticides, freeways, the loss of wilderness, and the extinction of wildlife suddenly realized they shared common values.

Earth Day 1970 achieved a rare political alignment, enlisting support from Republicans and Democrats, rich and poor, city slickers and farmers, tycoons and labor leaders. The first Earth Day led to the creation of the United States Environmental Protection Agency and the passage of the Clean Air, Clean Water, and Endangered Species Acts. In 1990, the observation became an international movement. Since that time, the rest of the world has embraced Earth Day annually. Although many in the US talk environmentalism on this day, the rest of the year is spent watching Congress try to abolish the EPA, repeal legislation that promotes alternative energy and reject climate change science as fact, instead clinging to “job-killing regulations” claims to justify corporate plundering of our natural resources.

Does your high school have a conservation or gardening class? Have you thought about how big your carbon foot print is? How can you reduce it? Does your employer recycle? How many high rise upscale apartment buildings do we need to build? Why are we not refurbishing old buildings and abandoned factories instead of increasing the seizure of green space in our cities and countrysides? Is your state willing to build a sports stadium before tackling the homeless problem? Do you wait until just that one day each year to think about these things?

If you do not think of every day of the year as earth day, there will one day come a time you will wonder what on earth happened to the earth.

Share