Here at Incredible Adventures, we treat every day like Earth Day. Not only do our employees take it upon themselves to minimize their individual impact, but being green has been fundamental to our success as a company for more than 20 years! In the office with our recyclable “hippie paper” or on the road with our bio-diesel powered mini-coaches, we go the extra mile to provide environmentally responsible tours for our customers and set the industry’s bar high for the sake of sustainability. Where did this universal enthusiasm for environmental change start? The year was 1969. Flower children were rampant. Free love for one another was obvious amidst anti-war rallies and protests for civil rights. For the concurrent devastation of our environment however, there seemed to be little concern. Throughout the decade, a few books and articles had been published on the subject. Presidential speeches were made, but not many could envision this matter truly becoming a national priority. That all changed when one Senator from Wisconsin decisively pushed this issue to the political forefront. Senator Gaylord Nelson announced the idea of Earth Day in the Fall of 1969, and with help from Denis Hayes, a young activist from Stanford University who was appointed Earth Day’s national coordinator, their proposition became a reality. On April 22, 1970, twenty million demonstrators across the nation participated in inaugural Earth Day activities. A powerful force of grassroots demonstrations and structured calls for change sprung up throughout the country. “The American people finally had a forum to express it’s concern about what was happening to the land, rivers, lakes and all – and they did so with spectacular exuberance,” Nelson said. By the end of that same year, Nixon established the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. By the end of that decade, Greenpeace, the Clean Air Act, the Water Quality Improvement Act, the Toxic Substances Control Act and the Endangered Species Act were enacted as well. The movement was a success and environmental concerns were finally being addressed at a national level! In 1990, Earth Day went global, engaging over 140 countries worldwide. Bill Clinton presented Nelson with the Presidential Medal of Freedom Award in 1995. “As the father of Earth Day, he is the grandfather of all that grew out of that event,” Clinton said. Today, 174 countries participate and more than 1 billion people are involved making it the world’s largest secular civic affair! Acknowledging Earth Day is one thing, but the international attention to our environmental impact that stemmed from it is what’s truly worth celebrating. So…pick up gardening as a hobby. Organize a composting program for your office. Recycle. Join a beach clean-up (like some of our employees did this past weekend). Take a GREEN TOUR and learn about preserving our National Parks. There is so much that YOU can do to make a difference. Be inspired, take ACTION, and do something out of your ordinary for the Earth!