What is Earth Day?

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Earth Day was founded in 1970 by Gaylord Nelson, a Democratic U.S. senator from Wisconsin. Celebrated on April 22 in the United States, it aims to inspire awareness and appreciation for the environment.

Nelson hoped a grassroots outcry about environmental issues might prove to Washington, D.C., just how distressed Americans were. When grassroots activities ballooned beyond the capacity of his Senate office, Nelson staffed a temporary office with college students and appointed a coordinator of activities. But it soon became clear that Earth Day was a full-blown movement. There were autonomous groups organizing in cities large and small.

Media coverage of the first Earth Day included a one-hour special on CBS News called “Earth Day: A Question of Survival,” with reports from a dozen major cities across the country. It was narrated by Walter Cronkite.

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Nelson died July 3, 2005, at age 89.

Source: www.wikipedia.org