Earth Day

Earth Day

Why in News?
 Every year, 22nd April is celebrated as Earth Day to raise public awareness about the environment and inspire people to save and protect it.
 The theme for the year 2021 ‘Restore Our Earth’ examines natural processes, emerging green technologies and innovative thinking that can restore the world’s ecosystems.

 Earth Day was first observed in 1970, when 20 million took to the streets to protest against environmental degradation on the call of US Senator Gaylord Nelson.
 The event was triggered by the 1969 Santa Barbara oil spill, as well as other issues such as smog and polluted rivers.
 In 2009, the United Nations designated 22nd April as ‘International Mother Earth Day’.

 Earth Day is now globally coordinated by EARTHDAY.ORG, which is a non profit organisation. It was formerly known as Earth Day Network.
 It aims to “build the world’s largest environmental movement to drive transformative change for people and the planet.”
 It recognizes a collective responsibility, as called for in the 1992 Rio Declaration (Earth Summit), to promote harmony with nature and the Earth to achieve a just balance among the economic, social and environmental needs of present and future generations of humanity.

Government’s Initiatives:
 It is kept under the species recovery programme under the Integrated Development of Wildlife Habitats of the Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change (MoEFCC).
 The MoEFCC has also launched a program called ‘Habitat Improvement and Conservation Breeding of Great Indian Bustard-An Integrated Approach’.
 The objective of the programme is to build up a captive population of Great Indian Bustards and to release the
chicks in the wild for increasing the population.
 Rajasthan government has launched ‘Project Great Indian Bustard’ with an aim of constructing breeding enclosures for the species and developing infrastructure to reduce human pressure on its habitats.
 The landmark Paris Agreement, which brings almost 200 countries together in setting a common target to reduce global greenhouse emissions, was also signed on Earth Day 2016.

Other Important Days
1. 22nd March: World Water Day
2. 22nd April: Earth Day
3. 22nd May : World Biodiversity Day
4. 5th June: World Environment Day
5. Earth Overshoot Day

Earth Hour
Earth Hour is the World Wildlife Fund for Nature (WWF)’s annual initiative that began in 2007. It is held every year on the last Saturday of March.
It encourages people from more than 180 countries to switch off the lights from 8.30 pm to 9.30 pm as per their local time.

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