celebrate earthday 2005

Celebrate Earthday 2005

Gillian Dickens, Tofino


On April 23rd the Tofino masses will gather together to scarf down stacks of hemp pancakes and gulp mugs of hemp coffee to celebrate Earth Day—a day to rekindle commitments to building a cleaner world. The celebration continues after breakfast with a town flea market from 10 am to 3 pm at the Tofino Community Hall. The market – hosted by the District – is an incentive for people to reuse and recycle anything they no longer want kickin’ around the house.

Earth Day is meant to broaden support for environmental programs and build community activism worldwide through events like the flea market and the Tofino pancake breakfast and silent auction fundraiser hosted by two local businesses – The Raincoast Café and Fiber Options. Employees are donating their time for the second year in a row to making yummy and wholesome hemp pancakes, topped with all-natural maple syrup for the folks of Tofino. The silent auction will feature natural fibre clothing and body products. Although Earth Day is officially on Friday April 22, both the breakfast and the flea market will be the next day – Saturday – to make sure as many people as possible can attend. All funds generated through donations and the silent auction will go to the Raincoast Interpretive Centre – a non-profit centre aimed at educating both children and adults about the natural environment. Last year the event raised $477 for the RIC.

Although Earth Day is as much local as it is global, it actually began in the United States in 1977. Wisconsin senator at the time, Gaylord Nelson, was so sick of us politics ignoring the environment as an issue that he highlighted April 22 the day to celebrate the Earth. This same governor, bless his heart, brought bans on ddt and Agent Orange (245t) and introduced mining and car emission controls.

It wasn’t until 1990 that Canada and many other countries hopped on the Earth Day train, marking April 22 as an international day to pump-up environmental protection programs and simply celebrate the Earth. Now 141 nations are on board. In 1992 some of these Earth Day supporting countries pressed others to participate in the United Nations Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro. This summit addressed issues such as species extinction, desertification and climate change. Arguably the most important revelation to come out of the summit was the Kyoto protocol – an agreement to effectively lower carbon emissions nationally and internationally. This movement is one example of what Earth Day is meant to do.

According to the Earth Day Canada website, Earth Day is the most celebrated of all environmental events in the world. This is probably no surprise, considering it is Earth Day. Even so, the numbers are staggering. Over 6 million Canadians join the pack of 500 million people worldwide organizing events for the day to address local and global environmental issues.

Keep your ears open to participate in local events. And as Earth Day supporters say, the point of the day is not just to raise funds but to raise awareness that the Earth shouldn’t just be celebrated one day of the year but all days of the year.

Some ways to reduce your footprint on the Earth are:

  1. Vote with dollars. What this means is if you want to see more organic food being produced as opposed to processed, over manufactured food, then buy organic (that is if you can’t grow it yourself.) Buy recycled toilet paper. If everyone in Canada replaced one roll of virgin toilet paper a year with recycled toilet paper over 42,000 trees could be saved.
  2. Use a reusable coffee cup to reduce the landfill.
  3. Recycle. One statistic shows that a recycled aluminium beer, pop or juice can has the ability to produce enough energy to run a laptop computer for four hours.
  4. Check your car tires once a month to see if they are fully inflated. Properly inflating tires improves mileage. Poorly inflated tires waste more than two million gallons of gas per day.
  5. Reduce purchases of over packaged or disposable items. Also, reuse more of what you already have.

Jillian Dickens is a freelance writer currently honing her skills with Fiber Options Clothing Company.

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Jillians Dickens writes about Earthday in Tofino in this article for Tofino Time Magazine in April 2005.

tofino time april 2005


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