A day where the world comes together to bring attention and support to environmental protection. And then on April 23rd, the world will go about its business and act like Earth Day never happened. It is quite sad that there is even a thing called Earth day. Why wouldn’t everyday be Earth Day? I mean the Earth is somewhat important to our existence (isn’t it?).
The majority of the world is oblivious to the environmental disasters that are occurring on a daily basis.
- Did you know that over 90% of the Great Barrier Reef is currently bleached? This occurs with the coral reefs cannot adapt to spikes in water temperature. You may not care but reefs support 25% of our oceans marine life. And yes, and El Nino has an affect on this but this is still the worst bleaching in modern record.
- The Aliso Canyon gas leak in LA county leaked 80,000 to 95,000 metric tons of methane into the atmosphere this year over a 3 month period. It is plugged now but California estimates that small leaks deemed non critical to fix by the utility company, leak far more then that in a year. And that is just California.
- Last year, the EPA accidentally let a million gallons of waste water leak into the Animas River turning it orange. This waste water was filled with iron, zinc and copper and originated from a mine that the EPA was trying to clean.
- There was a radioactive spill at a nuclear plant in NY (Feb 2016), Toxic mining waste spill in Brazil (Nov 2015), quarter million gallons of cyanide spilled into a river in Argentina (Sept 2015), and on, and on, and on….
- Estimated 8 million tons of plastic will enter the ocean each year.
- Earths deforestation causes the loss of about 13 million hectares of forest per year. (hectares is just less then 2.5 acres).
We have done such a great job changing our personal lives. From recycling to better fuel mileage vehicles to better insulation on our homes. And while millions of people make these changes for the better, corporations go unchecked.
This year, the Paris Agreement is being held on Earth Day. This agreement will hopefully be signed by the top emission producing countries in the world (China and the US being the two largest). The aim of this agreement is to work on slowing the rise of global temperatures be reducing emissions. Although, nothing in these agreements are binding and therefore there is no way to guarantee these countries will actually do what they say.
It is time for our voices to become louder in demanding that our elected officials do more. Although scientific data for global warming is still up in the air (although most recent studies show humans do have a significant impact). But even ignoring the global warming, how corporations and governments treat our planet is still unacceptable. We need to do more to pressure the governments to make the health of our Earth a priority. In a future post I plan on highlighting many ways YOU can make in impact with pressure on our elected officials as well as getting your company to adopt environmental practices.
Happy Earth Day!