Happy Earth Day across Canada and globally. The theme for this year’s Earth Day is “Let’s Take Care of the Planet,” which focuses on citizen engagement and natural processes and emerging green technologies that can restore the world’s ecosystems.

Earth Day, which is celebrated on April 22 every year, marks the anniversary of the birth of the modern environmental movement in 1970. Several agencies and governments around the world organize special events to spread awareness among masses about environmental issues, including the need to reduce, reuse, and recycle, and to take action to address climate change and global warming.

While there are limitations inherent with ongoing pandemic restrictions this year, there are still ways to celebrate and get active. Non-profit organizations such as Earth Day Canada, a charitable organization that helps individuals and organizations reduce their impact on the environment by taking action on Earth Day and every day, are inviting all Canadians to take action for the planet. Activities planned aim to raise awareness of the urgency of taking action for the environment and to highlight the positive steps citizens are taking in their communities to create a more sustainable future, while respecting the health measures in place and prevent the spread of COVID-19.

“Earth Day is celebrated across Canada, even during the pandemic. Solutions, while respecting health measures, exist. Citizens and cities across the country are taking action and developing original initiatives to address environmental issues,” said Pierre Lussier, president of Earth Day Canada. “It is by bringing together our ideas and taking positive action that we will be able to address the climate emergency.”

Tree planting relay: a reinvented tradition continues

Several activities are planned for Earth Day, including the traditional tree planting, which continues for a second year despite the pandemic, in the form of a relay between municipalities. Every 22nd of the month for the next year, one or more Canadian municipalities are committing to planting at least 50 trees on their territory.

“The City of Mississauga is proud to make a concrete commitment to fight climate change and improve the quality of life of our citizens. That is why we have committed to planting 1 million trees by 2032.  So it’s only natural that we also wanted to participate today in the traditional Earth Day tree planting: a symbolic gesture that reiterates our commitment to the planet,” said Bonnie Crombie, Mayor of Mississauga and municipal spokesperson for the Earth Day 2021 campaign.

Watch the video of the launch of the 2021 relay as the ceremonial planting inaugurates the celebrations on April 22, 2021.

Special virtual plans

Several virtual activities include the following:

9 a.m.: Launch of the second edition of the Tree Planting Relay on social networks and unveiling of the first participating cities

12 p.m.: Virtual Presentation ‘‘Fighting Against Food Waste’’, organized by Earth Day Canada

9 a.m. to 5 p.m.: Displaying of video testimonies from citizens taking concrete action in their communities for the planet

You can also consult the calendar of activities on the Earth Day Canada website to find out about the activities organized nearby or online as part of the Earth Day celebrations. There are activities planned through to April 25.

“Initiatives are being carried out in cities from coast to coast! Municipalities are at the heart of the ecological transition, and we are thrilled to see the commitment of so many cities this Earth Day,” said Thomas Mulcair, chair of the board of directors of Earth Day Canada.

Earth Day Canada is a charitable organization that helps individuals and organizations reduce their impact on the environment by taking action on Earth Day and every day. In August 2019, the organization Tous les Jours, initially active in Quebec and in the French-speaking world, became Jour de la Terre/Earth Day Canada in order to expand its environmental support programs across Canada.

For further information on virtual Earth Day activities, click here.

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