Earth Day, April 20th
Most of us don’t think about what happens to our compostable cup after we toss it in the compost container. After all, we’ve done our part by sorting our waste into the right bins. But every time we do, we are driving big change.
That’s the message UW Recycling & Solid Waste will share at the upcoming Earth Day celebration on Friday, April 20 on Red Square. This year, Earth Day is a part of the HuskyFest series of events around campus. There is an exciting lineup for Earth Day including exhibitor tents, key speakers, promotional giveaways, and the Husky Green Awards.
The very first announcement of Earth Day took place in Seattle in 1969 during a speech by Senator Gaylord Nelson, the founder of Earth Day. Senator Nelson was on a conservation speaking tour of the West when he stopped in Seattle for this historic speech. It was during this time that anti-Vietnam War demonstrations had spread to college campuses and Senator Nelson became inspired by this idea of a grassroots protest. More specifically, he wanted to translate this strength toward environmental issues.
Earth Day soon became a national movement. Nearly twenty million people participated in environmentally focused educational activities and community events in cities and towns throughout the nation. Congress even recessed for the day so that members of both houses could attend events and speak about Earth Day with their constituents.
“Earth Day worked because of the spontaneous response at the grassroots level,” Senator Nelson noted in 1996. “We had neither the time nor resources to organize 20 million demonstrators and the thousands of schools and local communities that participated. That was the remarkable thing about Earth Day. It organized itself.”
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Photos by Alex Credgington