By Nina Wu
Earth Day is Tuesday, April 22, 2014.
Each year, Earth Day marks the anniversary of what many consider the birth of the modern environmental movement in 1970.
While 1970 was the "height of the hippie and flower-child culture in the United States," according to the Earth Day Network, 2014 is an era of social media, solar power and genetically modified organisms.
Global warming, or climate change, was, and is, still an issue.
Do a google search for "Earth day 1970" and you find black-and-white images of demonstrations, rallies and a nationwide Environmental Teach-In over clean water and air. I like the ones portrayed in this National Geographic story on the first Earth Day. It was definitely not a time of apathy.
Today, many start celebrating Earth Day early, with events scheduled throughout Earth Month. There are plenty of ways to learn more or get involved on Oahu, whether you want to start a worm compost, participate in a beach cleanup or recycle your electronics.
The University of Hawaii at Manoa hosts an all-day festival at its symbolic Sustainability Courtyard. Former U.S. vice president Al Gore delivers a free lecture at the Stan Sheriff Center on Tuesday, April 15, while environmental activist Bill McKibben speaks at the Art Auditorium April 24.
Check out one of the events below.
EARTH DAY EVENTS IN APRIL
Worm composting workshop. April 13, 6:30 p.m. and April 15, 9 a.m., Nuuanu Congregational Church, 2651 Pali Highway, Kosasa Hall. The church’s Ula Wai ministry offers two free community sessions on vermicomposting by Ralph Rhoads of Bellingham, Wash. Reservations required by emailing Velma, firstname.lastname@example.org or calling 595-3135 after 7 p.m..
Al Gore lecture, 7 p.m. (doors open at 5 p.m.), Tuesday, April 15. Stan Sherriff Center, University of Hawaii at Manoa. Former U.S. vice president Al Gore offers a free lecture on campus, sharing his insights on climate change and related topics and how they relate to Hawaii. Organized by the UH Sea Grant College Program of the School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology, joinly with the office of U.S. Senator Brian Schatz. Free, but tickets are required and can be picked up from the Stan Sherriff Center Ticket office, 956-4483.
Mala Ho‘olaule‘a, 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Honolulu Community College, 874 Dillingham Blvd., behind the Children’s Center. Celebrate the harvest of The Garden of Niuhelewai, a taro patch, planted three years ago on campus. Hawaiian music, poi pounding. Call 845-9211.
Earth Day Ahupua‘a Cleanup, 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., Saturday, April 19. Kualoa Ranch. Sustainable Coastlines Hawaii is organizing a beach cleanup of several coastlines to celebrate Earth Day. Participants can also help rebuild fish ponds, do stream restoration work or native plantings. Check in at Kualoa Ranch at 8:30 a.m. to participate in cleanups at Kualoa Beach, Kalama Beach Park, Kahuku Beach and Laie Beach Park. You may also go directly to the beach location. Festival with lunch and live music follows at Kualoa Ranch from noon to 3 p.m. Partners include Hui o Ko‘olaupoko, Paepae o He‘eia and Papahana Kualoa. Visit www.fb.com/sustainablecoastlineshawaii for updates.
Mauka to Makai Environmental Expo, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Waikiki Aquarium. Honolulu's Department of Environmental Services and state Department of Health Clean Water Branch present the seventh annual Mauka to Makai Environmental Expo. Visit educational booths, learn about the impact we make on water sources from Mauka to Makai, watch a live rain garden demonstration and take pictures with Apoha the oopu and friends. Free admission, prizes and native plant giveaways by the Hawaiian Electric Co. Free parking and shuttle from Waikiki Elementary School. Call 923-9741 or visit www.waikikiaquarium.org.
Kaka‘ako Community Cleanup, 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. The Shidler Group, Team Hawaii Going Green, Kaka‘ako Improvement Association and others are organizing the third annual Kaka‘ako Community Cleanup. Free validated parking at Waterfront Plaza, 500 Ala Moana Blvd. (entrance on Pohukaina St.). Cleaning, painting supplies and refreshments provided. Starts at Mother Waldron Park, ends at Waterfront Plaza. RSVP to Steve Sullivan, email@example.com or 532-4751. Visit www.fb.com/events/648168028565920 for event details.
10 a.m. to noon, Hawaii State Capitol. Community clean energy rally sponsored by the Blue Planet Foundation. Join Hawaii's youth as they rally a future beyond fossil fuels. Visit www.fb.com/blueplanetfoundation for details and updates.
UH MANOA EARTH DAY FESTIVAL & CONCERT 10 a.m. to 11 p.m. April 24, Sustainability Courtyard, University of Hawaii at Manoa. 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Earth Day Festival: Visit more than 40 booths from student groups, local non-profits and green businesses. Plant sale, music, poetry, locally sourced food. 4 to 6 p.m. Celebratory reception. 6 to 7:30 p.m. Environmental activist Bill McKibben’s free lecture at the Art Auditorium. 7:30 p.m. to 11 p.m. Free concert by Mike Love, Sam Ites, Lucie Lynch and slam poet Jenna Robinson. Visit manoa.hawaii.edu/earthday or www.fb.com/uhmearthday.
Eat Your Yard! Edible Landscaping Workshop. 10 to 12:30 p.m.. The Green House, 224 Pakohana St. Organic gardener and permaculturist Tia Silvasy will lead this class focusing on growing food instead of grass. Explore the types of plants brought to Hawaii by many ethnic groups such as cassava, banana, taro, sweet potato, lemongrass, sugarcane and coconut. Cuttings and starts will also be shared. Fee is $30. Advanced registration required. Call 524-8427 or visit www.thegreenhousehawaii.com.
Green Day eWaste Recycling, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Nu‘uanu Congregational Church, 2651 Pali Highway. Pacific Corporate Solutions is accepting desktop and laptop computers, LCD monitors, printers, fax machines, keyboards, mice, servers, routers, DVD players, VCRs, cell phones, stereo equipment, video cameras, cables and more for recycling. No TVs or alkaline batteries. Free. Call 488-8870 for more information.
Malama Pupukea-Waimea Marine Science Talk Story, 5-7 p.m., Sunset Beach Recreation Center, 59-540 Kamehameha Highway. Learn the current science about Pupukea-Waimea Marine Life Conservation District. Light pupus and refreshments will be provided. Contact Jenny Yagodich, firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.pupukeawaimea.org for more inforamtion.