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Earth Day was created 50 years ago in Wisconsin

Posted at 7:02 PM, Apr 22, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-23 09:42:26-04

It has been 50 years since Wisconsin Senator, Gaylord Nelson, established the first-ever Earth Day.

Now in 2020, we celebrate the day a little differently than we have in the past 49 years. We are stuck inside, and parks are closed. However, there are still ways to celebrate.

"You can go outside and plant a tree, or you can teach your kids how to compost food waste," Tia Nelson, an environmental activist and the daughter of Gaylord Nelson, said.

She and her organization Outrider, have released a movie in honor of the 50th anniversary of Earth Day called 'When The Earth Moves.'

While there aren't community clean-ups going on like there usually would be, Tia Nelson said you should take the sentiment and the momentum from this day and use it to treat the other 364 days in a year like Earth Day.

"I hope that as people reflect today on earth day that they imagine making every day earth day."

It's hard to recognize some of the beauty around us in light of the coronavirus. Our thoughts and minds should be on COVID-19, but Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett said in an afternoon press conference, the fight for our planet is an everyday thing.

"We're going to navigate these turbulent waters, but what we cant do is abandon our commitment to doing everything we can to making this planet sustainable," he said.

In those 50 years that past since the first earth day, Nelson said there had been a lot of environmental achievements made.

"We adopted the clean air act. The clean water act. A republican president, Richard Nixon, created the Environmental Protection Agency. Great progress has been made on so many fronts," she said.

For all those grand accomplishments, Nelson said it started only with one person.

"We all have unimaginable power. We get up in the morning. We operate from our place of values. We do what we can in a way that has meaning to us, and unimaginable and wonderful things can come of it," Nelson said.

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