(Earth Day Letter to the Editor, published in the Town Crier, April 21
It has been many years since the first Earth Day in 1970. We have made progress. Our air and water are cleaner now, but the invisible threat, carbon dioxide, keeps going up. Bill McKibben cofounded 350.org in 2008 with the recognition that the levels of CO2 should not exceed 350ppm. Last month we hit 417.
Global temperatures are rising too, step by step, right along with carbon dioxide, and with consequences. Wildfires in California. Hurricanes on the east coast. The loss of polar ice and sea level rise. The list goes on.
We at GreenTown Los Altos preach and practice local action. There are still things we can do. Visit the Lunch with GreenTown talks on YouTube. We had speakers tell us about energy upgrades for your home, useful tips to cut your carbon footprint and still have a great life, the importance of good urban planning, why eating green makes sense, the value of sustainable agriculture and backyard gardens, art and the environment, and a personal favorite, why you should bike.
We also plant trees, over 200 so far. This is good for the planet, and a fun volunteer activity. Many students from our local schools have helped us. We also have a summer internship program targeted at those same students. Go to our website, greentownlosaltos.org.
Celebrate Earth Day. Take pride in what has been accomplished, while knowing we must do more. Our kids will thank us.