Earth Day at 50 (in the time of the coronavirus)

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Fifty years ago, on April 22, 1970, 20 million Americans rallied around the country in the first ever Earth Day celebration. Inspired by the anti-war movement and drastic environmental catastrophes, organizers united protesters in rural and urban areas in a bipartisan effort to protect the planet. The first demonstration led to the creation of the Environmental Protection Agency and helped usher in monumental environmental regulations, everything from the Clean Water Act to the Clean Air Act and Endangered Species Act. 

But we still have a long way to go in order to secure a sustainable future. Climate change, powered by the prolific consumption of fossil fuels, threatens communities, countries and entire ecosystems across the world. At the same time, global leaders have done little to curb greenhouse gas emissions. And that was before the Trump administration began gutting environmental regulations and prioritizing fossil fuel development in the U.S. In the wake of the coronavirus, matters only look more dire as regulatory rollbacks continue and there are promises of bailouts for the oil and gas industry. 

In the five decades since the first Earth Day protest, the event has gathered 1 billion people in more than 190 countries across the world. This year, the masses will gather online for Earth Day Live beginning on April 22. Local, national and global events will raise a collective voice calling for drastic climate action, as we battle the coronavirus together. Visit earthday.org for more details.  

And read Boulder Weekly’s news and opinions about the state of climate change action as well as a list of ways to celebrate Earth Day from home.

We must be honest about what the coronavirus outbreak will mean for climate action

Climate change won’t stop for the coronavirus pandemic

Oil and gas news

Nature bats last

In conversation with PETA founder Ingrid Newkirk

Films to watch for Earth Day

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