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Why in news?

In a message on the eve of World Earth Day, The Vice President has called upon all citizens to collectively strive for building a greener and cleaner planet saying environmental protection is a pious civic duty of all.

Earth Day 2020

  • Earth Day is celebrated on April 22 of every year.
  • April 22, 2020 will mark 50 years of Earth Day.
  • Earth Day was a unified response to an environment in crisis — oil spills, smog, rivers so polluted they literally caught fire.

History of Earth Day and what it is now

  • On April 22, 1970, 20 million Americans — 10% of the U.S. population at the time — took to the streets, college campuses and hundreds of cities to protest environmental ignorance and demand a new way forward for our planet.
  • The first Earth Day is credited with launching the modern environmental movement, and is now recognized as the planet’s largest civic event.
  • Earth Day led to passage of landmark environmental laws in the United States, including the Clean Air, Clean Water and Endangered Species Acts.
  • Many countries soon adopted similar laws, and in 2016, the United Nations chose Earth Day as the day to sign the Paris Climate Agreement into force.
  • The maiden Earth Day was observed on April 22, 1970.
  • Earth Day is now a global event each year; it is the largest civic-focused day of action in the world.
  • It is now coordinated globally by the Earth Day Network.
  • Earth Day Network is a non-profit organization, headquartered in Washington DC, whose mission is to diversify, educate and activate the environmental movement worldwide.

What is the theme for Earth Day 2020?

  • The theme for Earth Day 2020 is climate action. The enormous challenge — but also the vast opportunities — of action on climate change have distinguished the issue as the most pressing topic for the 50th anniversary.
  • Climate change represents the biggest challenge to the future of humanity and the life-support systems that make our world habitable.

Is it Different from Earth Hour? Yes!

  • World Wide Fund for Nature’s (WWF) Earth Hour is an annual global celebration that began in 2007.
  • Earth Hour is a celebration in which people switch off their lights for one hour to show they care about the future of our planet.
  • Recently Earth Hour was observed on 29th March and 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.
December 2023