Earth, remember her?

With everything going on, it would be easy to forget that today, April 22, is Earth Day.
Or maybe not.
No one would ever say there is something good about a pandemic. But there are lessons to be learned. And Mother Earth is already teaching us one of them.
With our vehicles parked, the air we breathe is making a comeback. You’ve probably seen the photos of the cities in India where people are able to view the majestic snow-capped peaks of the Himalayas for the first time in their lives. You also may have seen reports that right now Los Angeles has the cleanest air on the planet. Yes, Los Angeles, where the word “smog” was invented.
Every Earth Day I pause and think about its founder, former Wisconsin Governor and Senator, the late Gaylord Nelson. Gov. Nelson spent time on the Luzerne County Community College Campus in the early ‘90s as a visiting scholar. I’m not sure we’ve ever had a more important guest.
Gov. Nelson founded Earth Day in 1970. Wish we could say our planet has enjoyed a good run since then. But look around.
The Earth is still here, however. And with the recent recovery of the atmosphere, she seems to be reminding us that all we have to do is meet her halfway. She’ll take it from there.
As we contemplate the re-opening of the economy post Covid-19, we’d do well to remember these words of Gov. Nelson:
“The economy is a wholly owned subsidiary of the environment, not the other way around.”

Ed Ackerman