Earth Equity’s Jake Gandolfi discusses the importance of Earth Day 2019
I will start with a simple scenario. You are looking to buy a house, and, of course, you want the perfect one. To be perfect this house must be in a good neighborhood, accessible to the amenities you can’t live without, compatible with your lifestyle, and all for a price that you can afford. Sounds simple, but, for you, this is a big deal, so you are uncompromising in your standards. You prepare yourself for the long-haul search.
Frothing with the eagerness to find your future home, you begin that search. Almost immediately, however, you are dismayed to find the pickings are slim. In fact, they are not just slim, they are completely nonexistent because no such house, or any other house for that matter, exists. Saddened by this reality, you give up looking. Then, all of the sudden, you see it, the house you’ve been looking for. It’s the only one in the universe and it’s YOUR perfect house.
“How can this be?” you ask yourself. To make sure you are not going crazy you take a look around. You see the neighborhood is quite nice. There are eight friendly neighbors who come to visit every now and again, and one particularly tidy next-door neighbor who always lets you borrow their flashlight (well, almost always). Right in the center of town is a market that has everything your house needs. The house itself, is, sometimes with a little maintenance and upkeep, warm, inviting, and so stunningly beautiful that words alone cannot begin to describe it. And, here is the real kicker: it’s absolutely free.
You can probably guess by now what I allude to. It is the place that you, *ahem* we, call home, that we allcall home. It is the pale blue dot in a cold, vast, and almost entirely empty universe, situated so precisely, so perfectly in a neighborhood of celestial bodies that surround a single power source which provides the basis of all life as we know it. It is the place where everything we have ever known and loved resides. It is the canvas upon which our ever-expanding mural of human life unfolds. It is our past, our present, and our future. It is, of course, Earth.
Observed every year on April 22, Earth Day started as a small movement here in the United States almost 50 years ago but has since transformed into a worldwide celebration of our planet, the only home we have.
So, we move in immediately. I mean, why not? It’s the only house in the universe, completely fitting to all our standards, and absolutely free. With any house, though, our nature brings us to make things as comfortable as possible, so we start the remodeling process. We paint a wall here, tear down a wall there. We install some new lighting, new insulation, and new security measures. We divide and designate different parts of the house to fit the different aspects of our lives. We cultivate and harness the resources in the land upon which our house sits for the nutrients that keep us alive, and to create the things that make our lives easier. We do all of this and then some.
The remodeling process, however, comes with its share of consequences. Perhaps the paint you used on that one wall contains a chemical, which when breathed in, is harmful to your health. That other wall you tore down? Maybe it was actually critical to your home’s structural integrity. Perhaps your division and designation of the different areas of your home created a tension between you and the other inhabitants of the home. Perhaps you cultivated and harnessed so much of the resources in the land surrounding your home that that land has now lost the beauty and utility it once held. And, in all of these processes, perhaps so many unintended byproducts were created and disposed of that your home is now littered with debris. Maybe we escape some of these consequences in our remodeling process, but we never escape all of them.
My metaphor should be fairly simple. I want to help us understand the relationship between the nature of humans, one of experimentation, innovation, and ingenuity in building a comfortable and meaningful life for ourselves, with the Earth, i.e. our house in which all of our creative, and sometimes audacious, ideas are borne. In understanding this relationship, I hope we can fully start to grasp and understand our duty as responsible inhabitants to the onlyhome we have, and that too much remodeling, or careless attitudes towards the inevitable consequences of that remolding, puts our home in jeopardy.
I don’t want this to be just another “scared straight,” Inconvenient Truth-esque message, because today is a special day for us at Earth Equity. Observed every year on April 22nd, Earth Day started as a small movement here in the United States almost 50 years ago but has since transformed into a worldwide celebration of our planet, the only home we have. At Earth Equity, this realization is why we do what we do every day, and this holiday only drives our mission deeper. We love our home and will do anything we can to protect it. So, I will ask all of you the same question I asked myself when I got out of bed this morning and saw today’s Google Doodle: Is Earth Day a big deal?