22 April: Earth Day
22 April marks Earth Day, an event celebrated every year since 1970. Few could have imagined such a strange 50th anniversary, with half of humanity in lockdown. How can we celebrate the event from our living rooms? For all of us, defenders of nature and enthusiastic travellers, Into life has put together a series of suggestions designed to open our eyes to the wonders of our planet Earth and the ever-present need to take good care of it.
Major national parks and other natural treasures
Through the magic of internet, the planet’s most outstanding natural sites can be explored thanks to virtual immersion, using photos or 360° video imagery, starting with America’s best-known national parks. The website Virtual Yosemite is a model of its kind, with sound recordings that make for an even more immersive experience. Prepare to be seriously impressed by the famous Death Valley or the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. Dive right into the heart of the Amazon rainforest, be amazed by the majestic Iguazú Falls or Niagara Falls, trek across the Sahara desert or the Altai Mountains in Russia, the Komodo Islands in Indonesia… The list of potential escapades is endless, so follow your desires using the search function of Google Earth, Google Arts & Culture, YouTube or AirPano.
What better way to discover our natural heritage than a good long walk? As we pass the time until the pleasure of rambling becomes reality again, panoramic videos can give us a great idea of a walk, its environment and difficulty. Why not take the opportunity of lockdown to set off on a virtual trek along the famous GR20 footpath through Corsica or the trails of Bryce Canyon or the Grand Canyon? What’s stopping you embarking on the Inca Trail leading right to the summit of Machu Picchu, or the Angels Landing, one of the most spectacular hikes in the USA, located in the Zion National Park in Utah? For more ideas, check out Google Street View or YouTube, which provide a list of the world’s most popular treks.
“Climate change represents the biggest challenge to the future of humanity and the life-support systems that make our world habitable” Kathleen Rogers, President of the Earth Day Network.
- Co-funded by the WWF (World Wide Fund for Nature), the Our Planet series paints a picture of the current state of biodiversity on the 5 continents, over eight episodes each lasting 52 minutes. Each episode explores the landscapes and wildlife that inhabit the oceans, sand or ice deserts, savannah or jungle… Breathtaking images heighten our awareness of the fragility of the planet’s ecosystems. You’re bound to be moved – this is wildlife reporting at its finest!
- The Tales by Light series offers us an insight into the beauty and power of planet Earth through the well-trained eyes of world-famous wildlife photographers and video makers, frontline observers of climate change. Filmed during expeditions to some of the world’s most remote corners, their powerful images bring home to us the invisible consequences on flora, fauna and indigenous populations, as well as the ways in which we can protect them.
- Leon Logothetis, a British-born author, presenter, producer, conference speaker, globetrotter and philanthropist living in Los Angeles, travels around the world relying only on the kindness of strangers, from which he has derived a unique documentary series called The Kindness Diaries. Viewers follow Leon as he travels across the globe with no money, food or planned place to stay, guided only by chance encounters and the hospitality of the locals. Each episode is bursting with humanity and depicts a world in which kindness and open-mindedness are the central characters.
About 22 April
First celebrated in1970 in the United States, Earth Day is the biggest popular celebration of the Environment in civil society. In 1990, the initiative was extended and went global via the Earth Day Network, before acquiring official status in 2009 through a United Nations resolution declaring 22 April to be “International Mother Earth Day”. The goal: to remind us that the Earth and its ecosystems support and nourish us from the beginning to the end of our lives. The chosen theme for this year’s 50th anniversary edition is climate action. As climate change speeds up and the challenges become ever greater, it is crucial to raise awareness among those who inhabit the planet about the problems it faces, to bring about radical changes in behaviour.