How Are You Celebrating Earth Day?

Earth Day: The Limpopo River in South AfricaToday is Earth Day, an annual event that is meant to remind us of how fragile our planet’s natural environment is and the importance of protecting it. All across the globe millions of people are taking part in events designed to celebrate this amazing rock we call home, while simultaneously looking for ways to preserve it for the generations that will follow.

At the heart of this year’s Earth Day celebration is the “Billion Acts of Green” initiative in which organizers of the event have asked participants to pledge to take steps to lead a more “green” lifestyle. Those pledges can include something as simple as taking reusable bags to the grocery store or signing a petition to protect the Amazon, or as big as installing solar panels in your home and buying a hybrid car. The thought is that if we all vow to make small changes in our lives to help the environment, our collective efforts will have a lasting impact on the planet. To make your own pledge to the cause simply click here.

Additionally, a host of Earth Day events are taking place across the world today that will give us the opportunity to have a positive impact on the communities we live in. Those events include things like cooperative efforts to clean up local parks or organized recycling drives. There is even a rally scheduled on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., at 7 p.m. For a complete list of events or to find one in your area, click here.

As travelers, I believe that we understand the importance of protecting the environment as well as anyone. But I also happen to believe that we need to take a more active role in protecting it. After all, we are the ones who are jetting off to visit the far-flung corners of the globe on a regular basis. The next time you take a trip, remember to have a heightened respect for the place you are visiting; take nothing but photographs and leave nothing but footprints. That way those destinations that we love so much will be there for future travelers to enjoy too.