How to get involved this Earth Day

Every year, Earth Day offers people around the world a chance to focus on the planet and the challenges facing it. From plastic pollution to the climate crisis, there’s no shortage of issues to tackle. Earth Day is April 22, and this year’s theme is ‘Invest in Our Planet’. Regardless of how you choose to invest, there’s never been a more important time to celebrate this day.

As we run short on time to curb climate change, it is important for everyone to take serious actions toward a sustainable future. Fortunately, there are many ways to get involved, whether you join a local event, host something on your own, or simply celebrate at home. Here’s what you need to know about the day’s history and how to participate.

What is Earth Day about?

Earth Day is a global annual event intended to prompt discussion and action around environmental causes. This year’s theme is ‘Invest In Our Planet’, encouraging individuals, businesses and governments to invest in technologies and practices that can benefit the Earth.

A photo that shows an example of the unique and delicate ecosystems found in Galapagos.  In the foreground there is a single cactus.  Behind it is a lagoon of crystal-clear water, which is encircled by thick green shrubs and black volcanic rock.
An example of the unique and delicate ecosystems found in Galapagos. ©Joseph J Orsi

What’s the history of Earth Day?

According to, the initial idea for Earth Day came after a 1969 oil spill off the coast of Santa Barbara, California. In response to that disaster, US Senator Gaylord Nelson wanted to catalyse environmental activism along the lines of the movement opposing the Vietnam War. This led to the first Earth Day in 1970 — which saw 20 million people across the US participating — around 10 per cent of the country’s population at the time.

Earth Day became an international campaign in 1990, spreading to 141 countries, and by 2000, the annual event had reached nearly every corner of the globe. In recent years, the day has become something of a yearly milestone for the global environmental movement.

What can you do?

Here are some ideas for what you can do this Earth Day:

  • Reduce your carbon footprint by following our top tips.
  • Take part in citizen science and celebrate Earth Day by helping us count marine iguanas using drone images.
  • Join as a member of Galapagos Conservation Trust, and become a part of the ongoing efforts to
    preserve and protect these incredible Islands and their unique flora and fauna.
  • Use GCT’s home learning plastic resources with your children to raise awareness of plastic pollution and inspire them to make sustainable choices.
  • Swap gifts for experiences or charity adoptions. GCT offer a range of endangered Galapagos
    animal adoptions for you to gift to yourself or your loved ones.
  • Leaving a legacy to GCT in your Will is a great way in which you can have a direct and positive impact on the Archipelago for years to come.
A photo of four black marine iguanas sat on a piece of grey volcanic rock. They are all facing the camera, basking in the sun. Behind them is the ocean accompanied with a clear blue sky.
Galapagos marine iguanas © Juan Jaramillo

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