By Ed Vilade
Member, Earth Day Committee
Remember 1970, the year of the first Earth Day? Boat-sized V8 sedans spewed leaded fumes as factories poured out smoke and sludge. Air pollution was regarded as the smell of prosperity. A massive oil spill off the coast at Santa Barbara, California was the final insult for Senator Gaylord Nelson of Nebraska. He initiated Earth Day, and America responded enthusiastically. Twenty million of us participated in massive rallies and other events in support of a healthy, sustainable environment.
Earth Day 1 was the catalyst for development of an environmental consciousness in this country. Forty-eight years later that spirit has led to major legislation, and innumerable public and private efforts to save our Earth. But new challenges have arisen. No one mentioned “climate change” in 1970. No one believed back then that once gained, our environmental gains could be eroded.
Planning for Riderwood’s observance of Earth Day 2018 is already in high gear. The festivities are set for Wednesday, April 25 from 1 to 4 p.m. in Maryland Hall and the Chesapeake Room at Montgomery Station. A packed agenda of events and exhibits will be featured.
Among the highlights will be the annual recycled jewelry sale. The beneficiary of the sale this year will be the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, dedicated to restoring and preserving this unique and valuable natural resource for future generations. Information about donating jewelry will be coming shortly.
The Riderwood Earth Day Committee and the many participating organizations invite all residents to celebrate all the accomplishments of the past decades, and rededicate ourselves to the effort remaining.