Fifty years ago, a group of concerned individuals fed up with decades of unregulated pollution and industrial development decided to inspire Americans to take to the streets. In perhaps one of the greatest grassroots communications and campaigns, they got 20 million Americans (10% of the population at the time) to participate in the first Earth Day.

By the end of the year, their efforts had inspired the creation of the Environmental Protection Agency and numerous environmental laws, including the National Environmental Education Act, the Occupational Safety and Health Act, and the Clean Air Act; a remarkable display of what effective communications and constituent engagement can do.

To honor the efforts of these visionaries seeking to protect our planet, we compiled a few ways that you can take action while adhering to social distancing guidelines.

Write a Letter

Since 1970, Earth Day has proven how powerful our own voices are in making real change. Write a letter to your State Representative, State Senator, or Member of Congress asking that they address climate change. Consider sharing with your friends and family why Earth Day is so important to you.

Start a Garden

During these times of uncertainty and stress, a garden can be a great hobby, a source of physical exercise, and a great escape capable of reducing stress and improving mindfulness.

Start a Compost Pile

Composting your food waste will reduce the amount of trash that ends up in a landfill. Once it fully decomposes you will have fertilizer for the garden you’ve been tending to, saving both the environment and even some money.

Turn Off Water & Electronics

Do you know the impact of turning off the water while you brush your teeth in the morning and before bed? You can save up to 8 gallons of water daily, which is more than 200 gallons a month! Unplugging chargers or electronics when not in use will also conserve energy, and turning off the lights when you leave a room makes a big difference.

Makes goals for the year ahead

It’s totally understandable if you’re not feeling like celebrating this year or don’t have the supplies to do much. Know that it just takes a minute to be mindful of your habits to be part of Earth Day. Commit to one thing, such as giving up single-use plastics, or investing in a reusable coffee cup. Steps like this can help the environment and save money.

 

Earth Day is important because it serves as an annual reminder of the beauty of our planet and how we need to preserve it. Communications campaigns such as #StrawlessOcean and Plastic Pollution Coalition have been effective in using messaging and visuals to gain the support of millennials who have in turn made it trendy to say no to plastic straws. So join us this Earth Day in expressing environmental awareness. The Earth will be positively affected.