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Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Earth Day

stiv on sand1
Stiv Bators on a pristine stretch of Malibu Beach, CA

On April 22, 1970, the first Earth Day was observed. Senator Gaylord Nelson of Wisconsin founded Earth Day and Denis Hayes (a staffer of the Senators and still a leading environmentalist) organized it. In his own college days at Stanford, Hayes was student body president and an activist against the Vietnam war. These days, he still presides over Earth Day observances as Chair of the international Earth Day Network.

bright beach palms

By the time I was in high school (1972), you could take a class called Environmental Studies! Yes, it caught on pretty well, the whole Earth Day concept. My class project was a short film (shot on Super 8 movie film) with a narrative illustrating the history of pollution, comparing and contrasting biodegradable and non-biodegradable waste by having Eve (of Adam & Eve fame) toss an apple core into a stream. I even accomplished a "day for night" shot by faking a sunrise by shooting the moon rising and then colorizing the frames with permanent markers and food color.

Ride a bike for the economy, for Earth Day, for your wallet!
Nick Ray aka Nick Diablo, of Viva L'American Deathray Music

Punk rock always had a straight edge contingent - but even those who partook in the party way of life did always have a beef against Big Oil and Waste... it did fit in with the punk rock ethos against Big Business and all things Corporate (though you mostly saw the anti-corporate rock stance). YES, punk rockers were anti-hippie - but Earth Day is not exclusive to hippies and tree huggers.

Ride a bike, choose paper bags over plastic and reuse them, change your light bulbs. A compact fluorescent light bulb can save 2000 times its weight in greenhouse gases. The powers that lord over trash and waste disposal just have to figure out a way to safely deal with the mercury contained in these lamps so that if they get broken in trash fills, the ground doesn't get mercury poisoned. Well - caveat emptor for everything.

Do your part! Keep the beaches clean, don't litter, don't dump shit into gutters... it all drains to the ocean!


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