by Mark Cassini on May 14, 2020

50th year anniversary

We celebrated Earth Day by planting green buttonwoods and a mighty kapok tree at Intracoastal Park in Boynton Beach. April 22, 2020 marks the 50th anniversary of Earth Day. Since 1970, Earth Day has increased awareness of the planet we live on, and encouraged people to learn more about pollution, climate change, endangered species, and many other environmental issues. Normally this month would be loaded with tree giveaways, volunteer events, happy hours and tree planting parties. While it was quieter than usual, it felt so good to be out planting trees to heal and give thanks to our one and only Earth. “Planting trees provides comfort and stability during this uncertain time. This Earth Day, the City is more grateful than ever to have Community Greening as our partner as we work to expand our tree canopy and build our community’s resilience,” said Rebecca Harvey, the Sustainability Coordinator for the City of Boynton Beach.


Every year on April 22, Earth Day marks the anniversary of the birth of the modern environmental movement in 1970. As we prepare to mark 50 years of Earth Day in 2020, let’s take a look at the last half-century of mobilization for action:


Earth Day 1970 gave a voice to an emerging public consciousness about the state of our planet — In the decades leading up to the first Earth Day, Americans were consuming vast amounts of leaded gas through massive and inefficient automobiles. Industry belched out smoke and sludge with little fear of the consequences from either the law or bad press. Air pollution was commonly accepted as the smell of prosperity. Until this point, mainstream America remained largely oblivious to environmental concerns and how a polluted environment threatens human health.

However, the stage was set for change with the publication of Rachel Carson’s New York Times bestseller Silent Spring in 1962. The book represented a watershed moment, selling more than 500,000 copies in 24 countries as it raised public awareness and concern for living organisms, the environment and the inextricable links between pollution and public health.