International Earth Day 2011

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Image of NASA's Earth day logo

For its 41st birthday, the Earth Day Network has chosen the theme “A Billion Acts of Green.” This huge undertaking reaches out to individuals and nations around the world, and “rewards simple individual acts and larger organizational initiatives that further the goal of measurably reducing carbon emissions and supporting sustainability.” Organizations across the U.S. and around the globe are taking up the challenge.

Is it possible to register 1 billion “acts of green” before the global Earth Summit in Rio in 2012? So far, the number of registered acts is more than 96 million and counting (via a counter on the Acts of Green website). In addition to personal pledges to reduce, reuse and recycle, the site features major undertakings such as a massive two-day Earth Fair planned for Manhattan, New York, and a Global Day of Conversation to be held at locations around the world. Earth Day is celebrated on April 22.

While the Earth Day Network is headquartered in Washington, D.C., activities are planned or in process on every inhabited continent — and while Antarctica isn’t actually involved in the events, it is the subject of a major new documentary entitled The Antarctica Challenge: A Global Warning.

Meanwhile …

Image of deforestation in Asia

Deforestation in the Amazon - Photo from Earth Observatory

Nations across Asia are participating in the UN’s Billion Tree Project.

International Plantation Day, to be held on April 23, is an extension of the successful UN project, and will take place in Taiwan and Hong Kong.

According to the Earthday.org website, “International Plantation Day ‰Û_ aims to promote to all of the Earth villagers about the importance of deforestation and the underlying significance of environmental conservation education. There will be around more than 100 cities, and different environmental groups in different countries jointly participating ‰Û_”

Map of Dubai

Dubai is 'greening' its energy policies. Map from US Department of Energy Website.

According to the website The Green Prophet, “HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashhid Al Maktoum — Vice President and Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates and Ruler of Dubai — inaugurated Dubai‰Ûªs very first Global Energy Forum.

Organized by the Dubai Supreme Council of Energy, the three-day event ended April 19 and signaled a very real shift in Dubai‰Ûªs attitude towards energy.”

image of Volunteers working to clean up Pulicat Lake in India.

Volunteers working to clean up Pulicat Lake in India. Image from US State Department

In India, according to NewKarala.com, planned events for this Earth Day include walks, screenings of environmentally themed films, recycling events and clean-ups.

India is also involved with the Global Day of Conversation.