Care for our earth everyday, not just Earth Day

Growing up, I remember my mom’s shouts, “Turn off lights!” “Don’t waste tissues.”

Our area didn’t recycle yet, or we would have done that, too. People couldn’t eat Lake Erie fish because of pollutants; tributary rivers burned. Bald eagles didn’t fly over my Finger Lakes home or nest by the Susquehanna. Love Canal, an industrial pollution and health disaster, was often in the news.

Thankfully, the Environmental Protection Agency and other government and non-government agencies have reversed some of these problems.

But new issues threaten. Recently, an ocean research expedition reported an estimated 300 billion pieces of plastic in once pristine Arctic waters. In February, oceanographers reported chemical pollutants, including PCBs, in deep ocean trenches and organisms that live there.

Mercury is increasing again in Great Lakes fish. In China this May, I sometimes wore a mask and rarely saw blue sky in cities due to air pollution.

It was depressing.

Our climate warms. In Brazil, environmental activists are shot.

A mother myself now, Earth Day was a good time to continue mom’s legacy to remind us to conserve our resources, recycle our garbage, support environmental efforts and encourage our government to keep working through the EPA and similar agencies.

As a Christian and member of the Isaiah 6:8 Group, a group of Christians seeking to promote compassion and justice, I especially encourage those who believe God created this amazing world, to serve Him as faithful stewards through teaching, practicing and promoting care for the environment and by consuming conservatively and recycling at our home and houses of worship-everyday, not just on Earth Day.