MRHS Celebrates Earth Day


Every year, the world recognizes April 22 as Earth Day to show appreciation and support for environmental protection. Continuing with last year’s newfound tradition, this year there will be many virtual summits held beginning April 20th. Prominent activists attending these summits include Greta Thunberg, Alexandria Villaseñor, and Licypriya Kangujam, where they will promote discussion on issues and examine environmental justice.
The first Earth Day was organized in 1970 by Wisconsin Senator Gaylord Nelson. Nelson was disturbed that such an important issue with such drastic consequences was being neglected by the media and by the masses, so he started Earth Day to try and put environmental issues on the national agenda. The event was an astounding success, with an estimated more than 20 million people all over the world partaking in festivities and taking to the streets to show their support. Earth Day has become a major milestone and accomplishment for environmental activists and the event continues to this day.
Environmental issues are important to many students here at MRHS.
“I feel like we are responsible for the harmful effects of global warming. Global warming can cause an increase in temperatures, drought, and glaciers melting. Climate change makes species go extinct or become endangered. This results in a loss of biodiversity on the planet,” freshman Bhasuri Yerasi said. These issues have been brought to light thanks, in part, to Nelson’s contributions, and many Marriotts Ridge students are passionate about solving these possibly catastrophic problems.
“I feel very strongly on the need to act upon issues surrounding the environment, and if I were eligible to vote it would for sure be my number one issue,” freshman Henry Merkel said. Environmental issues are currently at the forefront of many people’s minds, and for good reason. They could cause harm to our wellbeing in the future. For instance, global warming could drastically degrade our drinking water, potentially causing massive water shortages.
MRHS students feel the need to work together in order to spread awareness about Earth Day.
“We could have a spirit week, or have students go out and do some project like planting trees. We should do something to show everyone that we care and that the environment should be preserved,“ junior Sarah Li said. Having a hands-on project that teaches students about the importance of conservation could end up being a very memorable and enjoyable experience. Also, in-person students may welcome the opportunity of going outside during the school day.
The impact of Earth Day can be seen around the world.
“I think that the significance is that more people can know about it and why it’s important. Many people don’t realize what really goes on,” sophomore Vihaan Pajad said. The aim is to get the word out to as many people as possible of these current issues surrounding the environment.
Even though a pandemic is still taking hold of the world this year, a lot of people are interested in celebrating and partaking in activities planned for Earth Day.
“I believe that many people will go out of their way on this day to try to do as much as they can to spread awareness and to have discussion about issues the environment faces,” Li said. Of course, things will be a little different as students still have to abide by the new norms set by the pandemic, so most of the major organized events will be virtual.
The world has witnessed many movements come together in order to advocate for environmental wellbeing. If many of these pressing concerns, such as climate change, go unchecked, dramatic changes could occur to people’s daily lives, possibly speeding up the extinction of many species of plants and animals as they cannot adjust to the rapidly changing climate. This is the only environment humanity knows and it is imperative that people do all in their power to preserve it.