From fog-covered valleys to lush, forested waterways, nature is a blessing and a sanctuary where we can escape the chaos of the world. And there’s no better time to celebrate it than Earth Day on April 22.
Earth Day has been a staple on the April calendar for more than 50 years, serving as a reminder of both the planet’s beauty and fragility. Wisconsin Senator Gaylord Nelson dreamed up the celebration in 1969 as a way to draw attention to environmental deterioration, such as the oil spill in Santa Barbara, California, that year. He introduced Earth Day as an idea for college campuses, but its impact spread much further. The inaugural Earth Day, on April 22, 1970, inspired 20 million Americans to take to the streets protesting more than a century of environmental degradation.
Earth Day’s message is now more relevant than ever. While much has changed since 1970 — including regulations, massive cleanups, and grassroots conservation efforts — there’s so much more to do. Whether it’s recycling and reducing waste, switching to reusable energy, or advocating for environmental legislation, there are numerous ways to celebrate Earth Day this year. For some extra inspiration, here are 12 quotes to remind you why Earth is worth protecting.
The ultimate test of man's conscience may be his willingness to sacrifice something today for future generations whose words of thanks will not be heard.
– Gaylord Nelson, Earth Day founder
To find the universal elements enough; to find the air and the water exhilarating; to be refreshed by a morning walk or an evening saunter... to be thrilled by the stars at night; to be elated over a bird's nest or a wildflower in spring — these are some of the rewards of the simple life.
– John Burroughs, American naturalist and essayist
The real wealth of the Nation lies in the resources of the earth — soil, water, forests, minerals, and wildlife.
– Rachel Carson, American biologist and writer
He who knows what sweets and virtues are in the ground, the waters, the plants, the heavens, and how to come at these enchantments, is the rich and royal man.
– Ralph Waldo Emerson, essayist and philosopher
The environment, after all, is where we all meet, where we all have a mutual interest. It is one thing that all of us share. It is not only a mirror of ourselves, but a focusing lens on what we can become.
– Ladybird Johnson, First Lady of the United States
In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks.
– John Muir, naturalist and environmental philosopher
We have forgotten how to be good guests, how to walk lightly on the earth as its other creatures do.
– Barbara Ward, economist, writer, and founder of the International Institute for Environment and Development
If there is magic on the planet, it is contained in water.
– Loren Eiseley, anthropologist and natural science writer
Earth provides enough to satisfy every man's need, but not every man's greed.
– Mahatma Gandhi
During our brief stay on planet Earth, we owe ourselves and our descendants the opportunity to explore.
– Neil deGrasse Tyson, astrophysicist
Humanity is now standing at a crossroads. We must now decide which path we want to take. How do we want the future living conditions for all living species to be like?
– Greta Thunberg, climate activist
Only if we understand can we care. Only if we care will we help. Only if we help shall they be saved.
– Jane Goodall, primatologist
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