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The Student News Site of Rock Bridge High School

Bearing News

The Student News Site of Rock Bridge High School

Bearing News

Columbians celebrate Earth Day

Earth Day is April 22. Photo by George Sarafianos
Earth Day is April 22. Photo by George Sarafianos
Bethel Park, adjacent to RBHS, during the middle of the day. Earth Day is April 22. Photo by George Sarafianos

While yesterday may have marked Columbia’s festivities, today marks the official 43rd Earth Day. Started on April 22, 1970, the first Earth Day drew in over 20 million Americans to celebrate the environment, according to the Earth Day Network. The festival has since grown to encompass over 190 different countries worldwide, with more than 22,000 global partners.

The EDN’s purpose is to promote “green economic policies at home and abroad [and] inform and energize populations so they will act to secure a healthy future for themselves and their children.” In addition to raising awareness of the environment, the EDN works towards providing environmental service opportunities at the local, state, national and international level.

Junior Kira Kirk said Earth Day is the perfect medium to reach people that may not be as involved with the environment as others.

“Earth Day reaches out to a wide variety of people on both a local and national level,” Kirk said. “Any day that reminds the public about the importance of Mother Nature provides [the] opportunity for at least one person to think about how they can make a long-term individual impact.”

As an environmental enthusiast, Kirk has seen the benefits of Earth Day first hand. Last year alone, she saw active involvement from both the environmental community, as well as the Columbia community.

Other active involvement took place downtown as well. Yesterday, an Earth Day market was set up on Elm Street. With over 50 different vendors, the market existed to educate Columbians on the cause while simultaneously promoting the holiday by selling environmentally conscious items.

But despite the support of many for Earth Day, there are still others who think the festival promotes values that are not as wholesome as they may appear. Junior Marissa Soumokil said the purpose of Earth Day has shifted from its original intent.

“I have nothing against taking care of nature around you. [It’s just that] people care about the Earth more than they do people. Earth Day has become, in my opinion, this … day that people can all make themselves ‘feel good’ because they care more about Mother Earth,” Soumokil said. “From my experience, people don’t really care about the earth; they just care about making themselves feel more informed, spiritual, caring, genuine, et cetera.”

Whether or not Earth Day is a purposeful event or just a resume booster, the holiday continues to grow in support across the world. While popularity grows, supporters hope to continue on in the cause of celebrating the environment.

“Earth day is a time to just gather as a community and celebrate Mother Nature and all the earth provides for us. We take so many things for granted without taking the time to appreciate where [they] came from, and Earth Day is a time to stop and celebrate it [and] life,” junior Ginny Tharpe said. “It’s also a time to bring awareness to issues threatening our world, especially man-made issues, and consider changes we could make as a community to protect our world and its resources, so we will continue to have them for years to come.”
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Music recorded live at the Earth Day Festival

Video by Urmila Kutikkad

Story by Ashleigh Atasoy

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  • J

    jillydosApr 25, 2013 at 1:14 pm

    Earth day is one of Columbia’s best events, you guys covered it well! I didn’t get the chance to go out this year, but it’s been one of my best childhood memories.

  • H

    HumeraApr 25, 2013 at 10:41 am

    Earth Day was awesome!! Great video as well 🙂

  • L

    laurenjamison7Apr 25, 2013 at 10:14 am

    I think more people need to appreciate Earth Day. With this story, it reminds people of this day and its significance. It also gives insignt on how other people feel about celebrating Earth Day even though some others might not. Well written.

  • S

    sophiewhyteApr 25, 2013 at 10:10 am

    I love Earth Day! The Earth Day market is a really cool way to get out and meet new people. Great video and story 🙂

  • J

    joshripleyApr 23, 2013 at 8:56 am

    Earth Day is certainly one of the more overlooked holidays. Thanks for reminding everyone of it’s significance.

  • A

    alexgompperApr 23, 2013 at 8:53 am

    I wish that I could’ve gotten out and done something with Earth Day.