If our definition of success is a single day dedicated to the earth, we’re toast.
Earth Day was an innovative idea 52 years ago when there were only a few environmental laws protecting our natural resources. The EPA hadn’t been established yet. Filthy air and water were the accepted norm. So it made sense when the Governor of Wisconsin started Earth Day.
Recognition days have since become abundant; the U.N. has more than 150 such days on its calendar. Some days, like March 21st, have as many as 5 simultaneous “International Day of…” observances.
Day observances are useful for ideas seeking early traction, (I see you National Cheddar Day on Feb 13th) but not for patterns that should be established in the regular fabric of our lives. Let alone for habits that enable life itself.
Let’s take a moment to think about this. We’re talking about the earth, the planet all humans reside. The place that gives us food, water, and shelter. I dare say it’s an idea larger-than-cheddar. It’s an idea larger than all the other 150 “days of ______”s. Without a well-functioning planet, everything on Maslov’s hierarchy is irrelevant.
We need to move beyond the small idea of Earth Day.
We need to shift our mindset to Earth Life.
We need to collectively do this or else we are putting our very existence at risk.
Perhaps the even more stinging part of this argument is that the earth will be just fine either way. Earth doesn’t need a day. It’ll be around for another million years. “Nature bats last” is a popular bumper sticker among environmental activists. Think about it; we humans are the ones who are actually at risk. We should shift from Earth Day to Earth Life for selfish reasons… like our desire to live.
I believe brands have the largest potential to drive change. And brands should shift from Earth Day to Earth Life.
Why brands? Because brands are where the money is. They are a force to drive systems change. Brands are where the flexible and direct-able power is.
Systems change tends to flow through three main avenues: governments, non-profits/NGO, and brands.