Sunday, April 29, 2018

Our Blue Marble

The first Earth Day was April 22, 1970. There were many environmental problems in those days, but these problems had been building up for decades. (See this NY Times summary of our status at that time: America Before Earth Day.) Those were NOT, for many reasons, the “good old days.”

View of the whole planet changed our perspective and we started Earth Day. It was MUCH needed at that time.
What had happened the previous year, was that we had seen pictures of our beautiful planet from the moon. The Apollo Astronauts called it a "Blue Marble." That name and that vantage point from afar provided a perspective of how beautiful and fragile our only planet was. Politicians of every stripe worked at every level to put regulations in place to reverse the rampant pollution of our air, water, and land. The regulations have been amazingly effective and air, water and soil pollution has been drastically reduced. Those regulations are still needed today—maybe  more than ever because there are billions more humans all competing our planet’s resources. It is unconscionable that right-leaning politicians, at all levels of government, have been working in many ways to undo environmental regulations that have been put in place during the last two decades to clean the air and the water.