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Friday, April 22nd is Earth Day. This event began in 1970 when there was no Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), no Clean Water Act, and no Endangered Species Acts. Staunch environmentalist Wisconsin Senator Gaylord Nelson was the brainchild of Earth Day. Senator Nelson said at the time, “The objective was to get a nationwide demonstration of concern for the environment so large that it would shake the political establishment out of it lethargy, and finally force this issue permanently onto the national political agenda.”

And indeed, the concern for the environment blossomed nationwide. Just a few months later in July 1970, the EPA was established by President Nixon’s special executive order to regulate and enforce national pollution legislation. Earth Day also prompted Congress to soon pass the Clean Water Act and the Endangered Species Act including several updates through amendments in subsequent years.

This year, there are a number of Earth Day activities in Snohomish County in which you can participate. On April 21st, an Earth Day celebration will be held at the Snohomish County Campus Plaza at 3000 Rockefeller Ave. in Everett from 11:30 AM to 1:00 PM.

Also on the 21st,  Heybrook Ridge County Park Trail Improvements will occur from 8:30 AM to 3:30 PM – register in advance.

On Earth Day the 22nd itself and into the weekend, a number of events are slated across the North Sound. Examples include:

9:00 AM to Noon – Lynnwood – Earth Day Cleanup Project Meadowdale Neighborhood Park

10:30 AM to Noon – Everett – Narbeck Wetland Sanctuary Annual Cleanup  at 6900 Seaway Blvd in Everett.

10:30 AM to 2:00 PM – Skagit County – Celebrate Earth Day with Skagit Fisheries Enhancement Group and Skagit County Parks and Recreation

10:00 AM to 4:00 PM – Woodinville – Bee Sweet to the Earth Free Family Volunteer Event

1:00 PM to 3:00 PM – Marysville – Earth Day in Marysville – Doleshel Park

April 23 – 9:00 AM to Noon – Mountlake Terrace – Earth Day Cleanup City of Mountlake Terrace – Mountlake Terrace Civic Campus & Veterans Memorial – 23204 58th Avenue W.

Check your local community websites to learn if there is an Earth Day event close to where you live.

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If you are unable to participate in a local Earth Day event, there are things we all can do to help the environment. For instance, plant a tree. Trees help convert greenhouse gas carbon dioxide to oxygen and reduce the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.

Transportation is the biggest contributor to greenhouse gases in the region. Steps to help reduce that issue include using public transit, carpool, take more efficient trips to/from work by also running errands, as well as walk or bicycle when possible.

Reducing use of electricity is also another step that pays dividends well into the future with a lower power bill. For instance, swap your lightbulbs with LED bulbs that use far less power. The next time you need to obtain major appliances, obtain high energy efficient appliances. Visit Snohomish County PUD’s website for more ideas on how to save energy and lower your bill.

Other personal ideas include bringing your own reusable bags to grocery and retail establishments or bring your own mug to your favorite coffee outlet. There are many more personal examples that can be accomplished starting on Earth Day and beyond at https://www.earthday.org/earth-day-tips/

North Sound Meteorologist Ted Buehner worked more than 40 years for the National Weather Service (NWS) from 1977 to 2018. He is now an Everett Post Media team member. Together with Everett Post Weather Minute Podcasts, he provides morning and afternoon commute traffic and weather updates on both KRKO and KXA Radio, and sports reporting on KRKO.