Earth Day - 2021 - Restore our Earth
Every year the world observes April 22nd as Earth Day on a global scale. This event was started in the year 1970 by Gaylord Nelson - A US Senator and Environmentalist. The event was observed to highlight the destruction caused to the environment followed by an oil spill in Santa Barbara, California in 1969. That year saw 20 million people taking to the streets to voice their anguish against the environmental hazards. Ever since - the 22nd of April is observed as Earth Day.
Various Earth Day activities highlight the urgency for stronger climate actions across the world. It is on this day in the year 2016, the landmark Paris Agreement was signed by the United States, China, and 120 other countries. This signing satisfied a key requirement for the entry into force of the historic draft climate protection treaty adopted by the consensus of the 195 nations present at the 2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris. (Source Wikipedia)
As the climate crisis becomes serious, each Earth Day becomes more significant in reminding the global citizens and its administrations that stringent measures must be taken in safeguarding the earth. Interestingly, this year’s theme is ‘Restore Our Earth’, which focuses not only on the need to reduce our impact on the planet as we recover from the pandemic but also on how humans can play a much better role in repairing the damages that have already been done.
Recent studies have shown that global carbon emissions are back and above the pre- pandemic levels and we need to drastically cut down emissions by at least 45 – 50% by 2030 if we need to keep global warming below 1.5°C, which is the most critical and toughest task today.
It can be said that we have reached a point of no return. Unless we restore our ecosystems, rejuvenate depleting water resources, reduce air pollution, recycle & manage our wastes and restructure & simplify our lifestyles. It is time that we look at nature-based solutions, sustainable development models, greener technologies and innovative ideas that can create a lasting impact to restore this Planet. It is therefore the immediate need of the hour to ‘Restore our Earth” to be able to live peacefully on this planet.
About Akshay Heblikar
Akshay Heblikar is a Director at Eco-Watch. Akshay completed his Masters in Environmental Sciences and then was selected to represent India as a Kinship Conservation Fellow for his innovative conservation programme on protecting and restoring coastal ecosystems across Uttara Kannada dist. Karnataka. He is a member of BBMP Biodiversity Committee. While he is heading the CSR projects at Eco-Watch,
his personal interest lies in developing a sustainable model of eco-tourism in Uttara Kannada. You can reach out to Akshay on firstname.lastname@example.org