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International Mother Earth Day: Taking Action For The Planet

Every April 22, we come together to celebrate International Mother Earth Day. This occasion is rooted in a movement in 1970 and was officially recognized by the United Nations in 2009. Today, it remains a powerful platform for driving global awareness and action towards environmental preservation.

As you read more about this event below, spark a sense of environmental responsibility.

Featured in: April - Awareness Months, Days & Observances.

History and Background of International Mother Earth Day

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On April 22, 2009, International Mother Earth Day sprouted from a seed planted by the United Nations General Assembly through the adoption of Resolution A/RES/63/278. Its roots, however, reach back to the grassroots environmental activism of the 1970s in the United States. 

The first Earth Day, a brainchild of U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson and activist Denis Hayes, blossomed on April 22, 1970. Inspired by this, the Bolivian government proposed the idea of an international day to the United Nations. 

Backed by over 50 member states, the modern environmental movement recognized the harmony between nature and the needs of the present and future generations.

Themes of International Mother Earth Day serve to spotlight critical environmental issues. The theme for 2023 is "Invest in Our Planet," encouraging companies to adopt sustainable practices, while 2024's theme, “Planet vs. Plastics,” emphasizes the negative impact of plastics.

The Cause and Its Challenges

cut down trees
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International Mother Earth Day aims to raise global public awareness of the complex challenges our planet faces, which in turn affects all the life it supports.

Deforestation, for instance, wipes out the equivalent of Greece in forest areas each year, inciting climate instability and ecosystem disruption. On the other hand, air pollution results2 in 6.7 million premature deaths per year. Next, around 14 million tons of microplastic waste fills our oceans annually, harming marine life and entering our food chain.

Meanwhile, biodiversity loss is frightening, with 1 million animal and plant species nearing extinction1. A direct cause is human actions, which have alarmingly transformed around 75% of our land and 66% of our oceans.

The rise of renewable energy sources is also vital to combat climate change. Pursuing this green path is essential to the worldwide commitment to limiting global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius, a benchmark set by 195 countries through the 2015 Paris Agreement.

Global sustainable development extends beyond environmental issues, touching upon socio-economic challenges. Production and consumption systems, including energy and food, must undergo a radical overhaul. 

Doing so without factoring in socio-economic repercussions, like job loss in fossil fuel-dependent regions, can deepen social divides and economic difficulties. Sustainability transitions, therefore, must be comprehensive, with changes encompassing consumerism patterns and collective behaviors.

Efforts and Initiatives

mountain and trees
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Several international bodies have shown unwavering dedication to Mother Earth. For instance, the United Nations Environment Programme champions global initiatives like "Play it Out" to address plastic pollution. 

The World Wildlife Fund's globally recognized Earth Hour promotes awareness of nature protection through an hour of not using electricity. 

Government initiatives also include environmental conservation. For instance, considering climate change, China's "Sponge City" plan aims to update urban water infrastructure. Conversely, Germany's Energiewende policy shows their resolve to switch to a sustainable energy system. India's National Clean Air Programme also targets air pollution reduction in its most polluted cities. 

These collective actions reflect the global pledge to protect our planet, cutting across geographical and cultural differences.

How to Get Involved and Support the Cause

planting trees
Photo by Lara Jameson on Pexels.
  1. International Mother Earth Day calls for global action in conserving our planet. Everyone, regardless of location or circumstances, can contribute positively. Here are some ways to support the cause:
  2. Organize or join community cleanup drives. Collective efforts in tidying up public spaces and bodies of water prove impactful.
  3. Plant native trees and shrubs to help improve local biodiversity.
  4. Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. Follow these three R's to minimize waste generation by limiting single-use items.
  5. Be conscious of buying sustainable products or supporting ethical brands. Check our shopping recommendations on hiking boots, kitchen products, and more.
  6. Conserve water and energy at home. A simple routine adjustment in thousands of households contributes significantly. Here are some lists of tips on how to reduce water and save electricity.
  7. Engage in eco-friendly modes of transport when possible. Walk, cycle, or use public transport.
  8. Advocate for environmental policies. Lobby to your local representatives on environmental causes you feel strongly about.


International Mother Earth Day spotlights the urgent need to address various environmental challenges. From reducing plastics to saving electricity, communities and individuals have the power to make a change. As stewards of the planet, let's take action all year round, making every day Earth Day.

International Mother Earth Day FAQ

1. What is International Mother Earth Day?

Every April 22, International Mother Earth Day becomes a platform for promoting harmony between the planet and its living species. It raises the need for collective responsibility to achieve a just balance among the world's environmental, social, and economic needs.

2. How did International Mother Earth Day originate?

International Mother Earth Day originated from the first Earth Day event held in 1970, orchestrated by U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson. United Nations adopted it in 2009.

3. What are the main environmental challenges addressed during this occasion?

It addresses various environmental challenges, including climate change, deforestation, pollution, loss of biodiversity, and unsustainable consumption patterns.

4. How can I celebrate Mother Earth Day?

You can get involved by participating in local events, organizing community clean-ups, supporting environmental organizations, spreading awareness through social media, adopting sustainable practices, and educating others about the importance of protecting the Earth.

Mike is a degree-qualified researcher and writer passionate about increasing global awareness about climate change and encouraging people to act collectively in resolving these issues.

Fact Checked By:
Isabela Sedano, BEng.

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