Earth is amazing!

Each year on 22 April, people from around the world celebrate Earth Day – a reminder to protect the planet from things like pollution and deforestation. By taking part in activities like picking up litter and planting trees, we are making our planet a happier and healthier place to live.

The first Earth Day was celebrated in 1970. Gaylord Nelson, a United States senator from Wisconsin organised a national demonstration to raise awareness about environmental issues. Rallies took place across the United States and, by the end of the year, the U.S. government had created the Environmental Protection Agency. By 1990, Earth Day was a global event celebrated by more than 140 countries around the globe.

Here in New Zealand, we have our own Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) – responsible for regulating activities that affect New Zealand’s environment.

Below are 4 ways you can help save our planet. Remember these ideas can be applied 365 days of the year.

(i) Sort your waste. Before you throw something away, think about whether it can be recycled or repurposed. You can also limit waste by reducing the amount of things you buy. For example, check the library for that book you have to read before visiting the store.

(ii) Plant a tree. Even if it is just in your backyard! Trees absorb carbon dioxide and release oxygen for people to breathe. They also provide shelter and food for animals.

(iii) Conserve electricity. For example, turn off lights you are not using them.

(iv) Watch your water use. Water is the new ‘gold’. It might seem like water is everywhere, but clean, drinkable water is a limited resource. Use a timer in your shower, and see if you can have a shower in 2 minutes!