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Earth Day

Earth Day is a name used for two similar global observances. While some people celebrate Earth Day around the time of the March Equinox, others observe the occasion on April 22 each year.

Stretched out hands gently holding a plant in soil.
People unite on Earth Day to appreciate and respect earth's environment.
People unite on Earth Day to appreciate and respect earth's environment.
©iStockphoto.com/webphotographeer

Earth Day and aims to inspire awareness and appreciation for Earth's environment. The United Nations calls the event International Mother Earth Day.

What Do People Do

The April 22 Earth Day is usually celebrated with outdoor performances, where individuals or groups perform acts of service to Earth. Typical ways of observing Earth Day include planting trees, picking up roadside trash, conducting various programs for recycling and conservation, and using recyclable containers for snacks and lunches. Some people are encouraged to sign petitions to governments, calling for stronger or immediate action to stop global warming and to reverse environmental destruction. Television stations frequently air programs dealing with environmental issues.

Public Life

Earth Day is not a public holiday. Transport schedules and opening hours for schools and businesses are not affected.

Background

The April 22 Earth Day, founded by Senator Gaylord Nelson, was first organized in 1970 to promote ecology and respect for life on the planet as well as to encourage awareness of the growing problems of air, water, and soil pollution.

Some people prefer to observe Earth Day around the time of the March equinox. In 1978, American anthropologist Margaret Mead added her support for the equinox Earth Day, founded by John McConnell. She stated that the selection of the March Equinox for Earth Day made planetary observance of a shared event possible.

Symbols

Symbols used by people to describe Earth Day include an image or drawing of planet earth, a tree, a flower, leaves, or the recycling symbol. Colors used for Earth Day include natural colors such as green, brown, or blue.

The Earth Flag, which was designed by John McConnell, has been described as a “flag for all people.” It features a two-sided dye printed image of the Earth from space on a dark blue field, made from recyclable, weather-resistant polyester. Margaret Mead believed that a flag which showed the Earth as seen from space was appropriate.

Earth Day Observances

WeekdayDateYearNameHoliday Type
ThuApr 222010Earth DayUnited Nations observance
FriApr 222011Earth DayUnited Nations observance
SunApr 222012Earth DayUnited Nations observance
MonApr 222013Earth DayUnited Nations observance
TueApr 222014Earth DayUnited Nations observance
WedApr 222015Earth DayUnited Nations observance
FriApr 222016Earth DayUnited Nations observance
SatApr 222017Earth DayUnited Nations observance
SunApr 222018Earth DayUnited Nations observance
MonApr 222019Earth DayUnited Nations observance
WedApr 222020Earth DayUnited Nations observance

Quick Facts

The United Nations' International Mother Earth Day promotes environmental awareness and calls for the protection of our planet.

Earth Day 2018

Sunday, April 22, 2018

Earth Day 2019

Monday, April 22, 2019

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Name in other languages

NameLanguage
Earth DayEnglish
Día de la TierraSpanish
יום כדור הארץHebrew
يوم الأرضArabic
지구의 날Korean
Jordas dagNorwegian
Tag der ErdeGerman

Alternative name

Internasjonal Moder Jord-dag

List of dates for other years

Fun Holiday on April 22, 2018

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