Marking the 50th Anniversary of Earth Day!

50 years ago, Senator Gaylord Nelson of the United States and Denis Hayes launched the first Earth Day (April 22, 1970) to begin what has become a global campaign to save the planet earth from the destructive impact of human-driven activities. Much welcome changes have occurred since then, but much more changes are needed to turn the earth away from the irreversible path of destruction in which human animals have placed it.

Today, the ideas of global warming and climate change are commonplace. Learners at all levels of education: primary, secondary, and tertiary have a good sense of these ideas. Because of the feeble actions of climate change enthusiasts and robust actions of climate change detractors, there is little to cheer about on this golden anniversary. Across the globe, every country is feeling the deleterious impact of climate change: the average global climate has warmed over 1°C, green house gas emissions are increasing, sea levels are rising and the biodiversity of the earth is reducing.

At Friends of the Earth Grenada (FOEG), we believe that this golden anniversary is offering us a golden opportunity to do something about the future of the planet in this “ungolden moment” of the Covid-19 pandemic. The unapparelled economic destruction and social disarray inflicted on us by the Covid-19 pandemic foreshadows what will happen when the full and irreversible impact of climate change is finally unleashed on us. The peculiar geographical vulnerability of Small Island Developing States (SIDS) requires urgent and concerted action by all citizens of these countries. If we do nothing, there’ll be no home for our descendants, our islands will be submerged under the oceans. Since they are low-lying nations, Small Island Developing States are projected to be battered by frequent storms, thus threatening lives and livelihoods.

On this golden day, we urge everyone to make a moral commitment to fight for climate change, to secure the future of our Islands and the planet. This can mean cultivating a sense of duty and stewardship for the environment, having a sense of respect for the environment, and demonstrating patriotism by doing all you can to save our beautiful Islands. Every contribution matters.

Here are some concrete things you can do:

· Promote climate literacy in schools, community, and religious institutions

· Become a clean energy evangelist

· Become an environmental conservationist

At a personal level, you can also choose to:

· Recycle more and learn to consume conscientiously

· Plant more trees

· Walk, ride a bicycle, or use public transportation

· Invest in renewable energy and use them to power your homes and vehicles

Happy Earth Day to you!

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