Celebrating Earth Day: we have good reasons to have hope

Last year was the hottest year on record, which can largely be attributed to climate change. Extreme weather events, drought, forced migration and sea level rise are affecting some 800 million people globally. However, as the world united in Paris to commit to climate action, we find ourselves on the cusp of a tipping point: cleaner, safer technologies have become the cheaper, smarter choices to power our homes and businesses. There is good reason to have hope.  

Since 1970, Earth Day has been celebrated annually on 22 April and acts as a catalyst for global cooperation in the environmental movement. Today, more than 1 billion people participate in Earth Day activities each year, making it the largest civic observance in the world.

Oak Foundation’s Environment Programme is passionate about protecting the world we live in. One of our key grant-making areas is in climate change mitigation with grant investments helping to guide economic, social and environmental development policies towards a clean and fair future. “Solving the problem of climate change requires collective action on a scale rarely seen before” says Charlotte Pera, President and Chief Executive Officer of ClimateWorks, an Environment Programme grantee, “we hope this will increase the likelihood of creating a safe future”. To find out more about the work of the Environment Programme take a look at the 2016 Oak Foundation Annual Report or visit our website (oakfnd.org).

There are many ways you can get involved in Earth Day 2017 and with thousands of events being held around the world this year on 22 April, there might even be something near you. Find out more by visiting the Earth Day website (earthday.org).

For more information on positive trends and reasons for hope, read the recent report from ClimateWorks, which looks at the technology trends driving decarbonisation in three sectors — power, transportation, and buildings — along with empirical evidence on what can drive these rapid transitions.

 

Virginia Ruan