Earth Day: What do we do to protect?

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3 min
By Birdee
I am like you. I imagine at least. I want to protect what I love. Today, 22 April is ‘earth day’. A day created in 1970 with the aim of raising our awareness ‘about the accelerating rate of extinction of species’ (amongst other things). As I read more and read on about our beautiful planet’s ‘vital signs’, the facts are indeed startling: ‘the global temperature is rising, warming oceans, shrinking ice sheets, declining Artic sea ice, extreme weather events, ocean acidification’…. My mind goes to a figure lying horizontal in a hospital bed. I can see the heart rate monitor…  And I, like you, I imagine, am left uneasy, saddened, and bewildered what to do. There are, however, global movements that are heartwarming. Teenagers around the world and in particular a 16-year-old, Swedish Greta Thunberg, have begun a striking from school one day a week to protest inaction regarding the climate crisis. And the Nobel Peace Prize panel noted that if climate change will displace 250 million people by 2050, one of the greatest acts for peace is surely to prevent this. Yes. Absolutely, the thinking behind earth day was to encourage both our individual and collective involvement in this rescue. Meaning we all have our part to play. I, a big-fat-idealist (and proud of it) have always believed just one candle in the dark can light up the room, and if there are many candles, so much brighter could our futures be.  For those of you more pragmatically-minded, as the brilliant Atonement author Ian McEwan remarks our “self-interest and actually interest in profit, is going to drive this as much as idealism”. So , beyond taking to the streets, what can we do? Well, as my great-auntie Madeline always used to say to me (about boyfriends, but safe it to safe it applies here too): action speaks louder than words. (A truism we writers can ignore.) And there are many ways to act with our own, our local environment and our world’s best interests at heart. One being, the choice to invest in sustainable development. Birdee offers this choice.  Remember the adage ‘you reap what you sow’ well, what you invest in you protect. Could it be that the ‘natural-world’ and it’s seeming enemy of ‘technological innovation’ could reconcile and befriend one another, even save one another? Walking hand in hand into the fresh clean air and sunset? I believe so. It can feel disquieting to know how to find our ways. Protecting, investing in what we believe in is one simple action towards our better future. And I say this having grown up in Britain therefore on a diet questionable school-dinners but high-quality wildlife documentaries. (I know I know, Britain, the British and British-isms may have lost some gravitas in Europe in the times of late. Yet, if there is something I do still consider majestic and worthy of pride of the small Island I grew up in, it is the wildlife documentaries.) Especially, those by Sir David Attenborough. He has been a clear and sensible voice on matters of the environment for seven decades.  He has been working tirelessly to educate us on the needs of the planet. He ends his epic series Planet Earth 2 saying this: “Surely our responsibility is to do everything within our power to create a home, not just for us but for all life on earth”. Surely, we should protect, invest, to keep safe the precious things we love. Find out more what is offered at Birdee here.


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