As part of a local observance of Earth Day, a large group of MCC students, many
representing Phi Theta Kappa honorary, picked up trash along Business U.S. 31 in Muskegon.
Earth Day has been designated as a day to celebrate the planet and encourage people to
be more environmentally friendly. It is now an annual event and is widely regarded as the
beginning of the modern environmental movement.
Activities associated with the day often include planting trees, raising awareness about
recycling, volunteering for green projects, and reducing the amount of energy people consume.
Earth Day was founded by Gaylord Nelson, then a U.S. Senator from Wisconsin, after he
witnessed the ravages of the 1969 oil spill in Santa Barbara, California.
Inspired by the student anti-war movement, he realized that if he could combine
that energy with the emerging public consciousness about the environment, then it could be
propelled into the national political agenda. April 22 was picked as the date for Earth Day as it
fell between spring break and final exams.
The first celebration involved 20 million Americans and shortly afterwards the passage of
the landmark Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act, Endangered Species Act and many other
groundbreaking environmental laws followed.
By the ‘90s, Earth Day had gone global with 200 million people in 141 countries on
board, lifting environmental issues onto the world stage.
The Earth Day theme for 2017 is environmental and climate literacy. To continue the
momentum, consider trying some of the following activities:
Walk to work, cycle or take public transport
Use a reusable coffee cup
Take a tote bag to shop
Plant a tree
Go meat or dairy free at least once a week
Carry a reusable water bottle
Grow your own fruit and vegetables
Buy local produce
Featured Image: Jacob Lorenz and Alyssa Tucker were among the group of MCC students who participated in trash cleanup along Business U.S. 31 on Saturday. – Photo by Grace Dowling.