Earth Day 1990

Sunday, April 22, 1990

Compiled by Michael Fabrizo
April 1990; page 13; Volume 1, No. 5

The first Earth Day: April 22, 1970

Earth Day 1970 was the largest organized demonstration in history. More than 20 million people participated in the event that gave birth to the modern American environmental movement. Activities ranged from nature walks to direct action against major polluters. The Mayor of New York banned automobiles from Fifth Avenue and 100,000 people attended an eco-fair in Union Square. The U.S. Congress formally adjourned for Earth Day to enable members to attend teach-ins in their districts. In response to the concern voiced by Earth Day activities, the Environmental Protection Agency was created in 1971. The Clean Air Act and the Clean Water Act soon followed.
- From the Earth Day 1990 organizers in Stanford, CA

On April 22, 1970, the world celebrated the first Earth Day. Nearly 20 million people participated. It was the largest, cleanest, most peaceful demonstration in America's history. But don't call it a success. Because the problems are still with us. Pollution. Overpopulation. Overkill. Slums. Racism. Wasted Resources. Planned obsolescence. A widening war.

On April 22, a generation dedicated itself to reclaiming the planet. A new kind of movement was born - a bizarre alliance that spans the ideological spectrum from campus militants to middle Americans. Its aim: to reverse our rush toward extinction. If the environmental movement succeeds it will profoundly change corporations, government, and the way each of us lives. But it faces obstacles that are political as well as technical. And the battle lines are already being drawn.
- from the book Earth Day - The Beginning, published in May 1970.

The next Earth Day: April 22, 1990

Some of the problems that fueled the original Earth day have been addressed effectively. Others have only grown worse. Moreover, our planet now faces a diverse array of new ills: Greenhouse gases, ozone holes, acid rain, toxic wastes, expanding deserts and shrinking rainforests. It is time for another Earth Day, this time international in scope, linking local concerns to global crises. Many decisions about how to participate must be made at the local, regional, and national levels. However, some consistent elements will unite these diverse activities into a coherent force. Some specific accomplishments we hope to achieve:

  • A worldwide ban on chlorofuorcarbons - chemicals that destroy the ozone layer and contribute to global warming.

  • Slowing the rate of global warming and the spread of acid rain by promoting renewable energy and energy efficiency.
  • A halt to global deforestation coupled with a program to plant a billion trees.
  • Implementation of strong, effective recycling programs in every community and a ban on packaging materials that are neither recyclable nor biodegradable.
  • A comprehensive hazardous waste program, emphasizing source reduction.
  • Organization of a powerful international agency with authority to safeguard the atmosphere, the oceans, and other global commons from international threats.
  • The adoption by all countries of strategies to stabilize their populations within limits that are sustainable using environmentally available agricultural and industrial processes.
  • Earth Day on Campus

    The Natural Sciences Council of the College of Liberal Arts will be celebrating Earth Week April 16-20. Each day will center on a different aspect of environmentalism:

    Monday The interrelation of animals and plants
    Tuesday Recycling
    Wednesday Nuclear plants and wastes
    Thursday Pesticides
    Friday Health effects

    President Cunningham and the deans of all the colleges have been invited to plant trees on campus. Throughout the week, exhibits will be open at the Texas Memorial Museum and the UGL. Texas Agricultural Commissioner Jim Hightower has been invited to speak about pesticides on Wednesday, and on Thursday evening, Dr. Donald Carlton, president of Radian Corporation, will moderate a panel discussion. At each event, the seedlings will be distributed, which will then be planted at an East Austin park on Earth Day, Sunday April, 22.

    For more information or to volunteer, contact Candance Chandra, Natural Sciences Council Vice-President, at [defunct phone number redacted].

    For more information or to donate time or money

    Nationally Locally
    Earth Day 1990 [defunct address and phone number redacted]
    PO Box AA
    Stanford, CA 94309
    (415) 321-1990

    What you can do

    There are many ways that you can be friendly to the environment, but the one change you can make that will have the most impact is to eat less meat. A typical farm animal eats 7 times as much grain than it produces as meat. This wastes an incredible amount of food, land, and water. In the U.S., over 260 million acres of land have been cleared to graze cattle or to grow grain to feed them. Over half the water used in the U.S. is used to grow grain to feed farm animals. The typical American diet requires 4,000 gallons of water per day to support, while a vegetarian diet uses only 300 gallons. For more information about vegetarianism, contact LOVE (Legion of Vegetarian Enthusiats), [defunct address and phone number redacted].