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How to Celebrate Earth Day’s 50th Anniversary April 22nd

Earth Day 2020 cookies for activities to celebrate
Earth Day 2020 cookies for activities to celebrate

A call for climate action. A toast to protecting our planet. This Wednesday, April 22, 2020 marks the 50th Anniversary of Earth Day, now observed in 192 countries by over a billion people. This year, in these unusual times, Earth Day Network is calling for us to fill the digital landscape with global conversations, calls to action, performances, video teach-ins and more.

Earth Day’s Roots In the US-of-A

Amidst student anti-war movements in 1970, Wisconsin Senator Gaylord Nelson had the idea to harness that energy for a “national teach-in on the environment” event. The catalyst? A terrible Santa Barbara oil spill that killed thousands of animals in its 800-mile oil slick. On April 22nd the first Earth Day (chosen to fall between spring break and final exams), 20 million Americans came out to rallies across the country. It united people and party lines and by the end of 1970, led to the creation of the United States Environmental Protection Agency and the passage of the Clean Air Act.

Go Green with These Inspiring, Free Virtual Activities

The “official Earth Day site,” Earthday.org is helping us go digital this year with “24 hours of action on Earth Day.” On April 22nd, every hour, on the hour, they’ll have a new, powerful way for you to demand action and drive change on earthday.org and their social media (@earthdaynetwork). Don’t miss their interactive worldwide map to find events near you. And check out their 22-day Earth Day Daily Challenge for easy actions you can take yourself.

EarthX2020 Earth Day Activities

EarthX2020 in Partnership with the National Geographic Society will host an Earth Day Live Stream Celebration featuring the Earth Day Founder’s Daughter Tia Nelson, National Geographic Explorer Dr. Enric Sala, Chairman of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Neil Chatterjee and more top eco-leaders. Visit their site for other live conferences and events like the April 24th Sustainable Leaders Series and Women in Sustainability.

EarthXFilm Festival will be live-streamed for free April 16-27 and shares 35+ films, 50+ immersive experiences, youth programming, and panels to inspire and share incredible stories and experiences across the globe. Check out the schedule and add screenings to your calendar here.

Tune in to the Discovery Channel TV premiers of The Story of Plastic, an illustration across three continents of the dire worldwide effects of plastic, as well as Great Global Clean Up, where Zac Efron and Tik Tok star Zach King (yeah, we don’t know either) spotlight the next generation’s efforts to clean the planet. Disney Channel will have day-long programming beginning at 2p.m. including a new National Geographic special, Born Wild: The Next Generation, the Disneynature films Monkey Kingdom and Penguins. BBC America kicks off four days of special programming Monday, April 20, leading up to an Planet Earth II marathon on Earth Day.

NASA has launched (pun intended) an #EarthDayAtHome site with videos, online games and mobile apps, social media events, and even Lego activities. Yes you read right, on Earth Day, LEGO builders around the world will have a special #LetsBuildTogether challenge developed with NASA. At 11a.m. (EDT) join NASA scientists on Facebook as they talk about working in Earth’s ultimate remote location, Antarctica. At 3 p.m. (EDT), “NASA Science Live” will air a special edition with NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine sharing how NASA technology is helping our planet, from mapping coral reefs, the newest electric airplane, and how we use technology developed for space on Earth.

The U.S. Youth Climate Strike Coalition is bringing people together with Earth Day Live, a 72-hour livestream featuring celebrities, musicians, activists and youth climate leaders who will share their vision of how we can come through this time of upheaval better prepared to make changes to confront the climate crisis. Find out more.

The Professional Association of Diving Instructors (PADI) is having a live Earth Day #SaveOurOceanChat Twitter chat, leading the conversation on Sustainable Development Goal #14 Life Below Water. Mission Blue, the UN Sustainable Development Goals section, and Project Aware will be joining 9a.m. PST on April 22nd to ignite the conversation on how the health of our oceans is impacted by various aspects of life and how we can all make a difference.

Wanderful is hosting a virtual Earth Day Coffee Chat, ‘Simple Steps to Sustainable Living’ with our Founder Lauren on April 22 (or stay tuned on our site for her blogs on the subject). Become a Wanderful member (like us!) to attend the chat and connect with 45,000+ other travel-loving women, join virtual events like language circles and story slams, get special discounts, and access free chapter events worldwide.

Bring It Home

The most important thing you do may be to spread the word and help get others involved.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) invites everyone to celebrate by drawing pictures, making signs (or download their poster, right), or using whatever recycled materials you have around the house to decorate the windows of your home to celebrate Earth Day with your community. They’ve got student project resources and green living tips at the ready.

(Insert shameless plus here) And while you’re at home with your screens on Earth Day, why not also support a small, sustainable brand with a little online shopping. Have you checked out our Staycation or Keep It Clean Collections yet?? Or read about what a B Corp is and why to support these brands committed to making an impact.

Google “Earth Day events near me” and check Facebook and your local news outlets to see what else your local community is offering. Spread the word yourself on social using #EarthDay2020 and #EarthRise. We’d also encourage you to set a few easy goals you can make a difference in the next year… and most important, take a moment to get outside and enjoy some nature time and the wonders of our Earth.

Enjoy the day and get involved Wanderlust Warriors!

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