Clean-up participants can drive by through the parking lot at Scotiabank to drop off the trash collected in the Rotary Community Clean-up on April 23. (SUBMITTED PHOTO)

Clean-up participants can drive by through the parking lot at Scotiabank to drop off the trash collected in the Rotary Community Clean-up on April 23. (SUBMITTED PHOTO)

EDITORIAL: Small actions can have big impact on Earth Day

This year’s Canada-wide event takes place April 22

Earth Day was founded in Canada in 1990 with the mission of helping people and organizations reduce their impact on the environment. Earth Day takes place April 22 this year.

Traditionally a day of environmental action, Earth Day has become a time for people to stop and think about their impact on the planet and raise awareness about what can be done. Every year there is a theme, and this year’s focuses on eco-anxiety—a mental health issue that is gaining traction.

Canadians are encouraged to ‘call in sick’ to the Earth Day website at earthday.ca and add their voices to a call for action. The message they will receive is that ‘taking action together can help us remedy together.’

Taking action doesn’t have to be a grand gesture: it can be something as simple as turning off the lights when you leave a room, putting on a sweater and turning down your heat a degree or two, and picking up litter around your home or neighbourhood. Even these small decisions are beneficial to the overall care of the planet.

Two Port Alberni-based service groups have ready-made inspiration for those who cannot decide what to do. The Alberni chapter of Back Country Horsemen of B.C. has created a contest, asking people using the backcountry—not just equestrians—to pick up litter while they are recreating on Earth Day and take a selfie to enter the contest. Email chloewangler@gmail.com for info and to enter.

The Rotary Club of Port Alberni is planning its second annual community cleanup Saturday, April 23. Community groups and individuals can sign up to clean certain areas of the city; the Rotary Club has arranged for a dumpster to be placed in the Scotiabank parking lot at 10th Avenue and Redford Street for people to bring the collected trash between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Sign up on the Rotary Club’s Facebook page.

— Alberni Valley News

Alberni ValleyAlberni-Clayoquot Regional DistrictEnvironmentPort Alberni