April 22, 2009
EARTH DAY -- Earth Day Network
-Earth will travel 1.6 million miles in its annual journey around the Sun, the 4.6-billionth such round-trip. It will rotate about its axis exactly once.
-The Sun will travel 13.5 million miles around the center of the Milky Way Galaxy.
-The Sun will fuse 51.8 billion tons of hydrogen into 51.5 billion tons of helium. The other 0.3 billion tons will be released as energy. The energy poured forth in all directions each day is 10 trillion trillion kilowatt-hours. The fraction of this energy that bathes the Earth powers nearly everything that lives there.
-The fraction of the sun's energy intercepted by the Earth at the top of its atmosphere is 6000 trillion kilowatt-hours, about 600,000 times the quantity Americans consume in a day.
-The population of the world will grow by 211,000 people. A new Akron, Ohio will be added every day.
-40,000 acres of land, an area about the size of Boise, Idaho will be converted to desert.
-200 million tons of topsoil will be lost through erosion from croplands.
-50,000 acres of forest will be eliminated.
-Between 20 and 500 species will disappear from the planet forever. We know so little about the family of life to which we belong that we cannot quantify the damage we are inflicting upon it. -We do know that extinctions are occurring 100 to 1,000 times faster than the normal background rate.
-People will consume more than 3 billion gallons of oil.
-Burning the oil and other fossil fuels will release 70 million tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, slowly but surely nudging the planet's temperature upward.
-3 million tons of iron ore, 575 thousand tons of tin, 330 thousand tons of bauxite (for aluminum), and 34 thousand tons of copper will be ripped from the Earth.
-800 million people will go to bed hungry and awake too weak to lead productive lives.
-18,000 children will die from chronic hunger, malnutrition, and related diseases.
-The world will spend $3 billion on military expenditures, half by one country.
$2 billion will be invested in research and development. This will result in the publication of 1,900 science and engineering articles and granting of 150 patents.
4000 books will be published.
-1.3 billion children will be educated in pre-primary, primary, and secondary schools.
-97 billion e-mail messages will be sent, more than 40 billion of which will be spam.
Things I am planning on doing tomorrow:
- Plant garden vegetables in my front yard with the help of two little girls.
- Teach my kids about Earth Day.
- Take a hike to enjoy my earth.
- Read the recycling regulations for my city and post them by our trash can.
- Fix my sink that drips when my kids dont close the valve enough.
- Commit to bike my drive. (currently this is only for times that do not involve the family, but we are looking for a trailer to bike more often.)
- Join CSA farm for this season's vegetables.
- No computer or TV for the day.
So, I have put some thought towards my Earth Day celebration. If everyone will make small changes the outcome will be great. For those of you that have not put much thought to what you can do I have included a few links of great websites full of information and ideas. I prefer to surf web sites for information and follow links to explore.
Here are few that I have found.
the daily green: the consumer's guide to the green revolution
Sierra Club: Green Home- news and tips to improve the health and efficiency
the Alternative Consumer: eco-friendly shopping. geared toward the lifestyle
Local Harvest: helping community folks meet the farmers (great links to CSAs & markets)
Olive Green Dog: Eco friendly dog products; even Fido can do his part.
Well, hopefully this gets you started for now. Soon you will be thinking more green and Earth Day can be every day for you. Every little bit helps so even if you cant come up with any good ideas then just hold your breath. (For a few seconds you can reduce CO2 emissions.)