New Mexico Democrats Commemorate Earth Day

View of the Organ and Robledo Mountains from the west, proposed Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument. Photo: Stephen Jones

View of the Organ and Robledo Mountains from the west, proposed Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument. Photo: Stephen Jones

Today, April 22, is Earth Day. The Democratic Party of New Mexico joins in celebrating the natural environment that we all share. We also celebrate the great vistas of our county, our state, and our region, which are a constant reminder for us of the rich environmental trust that we, and our fellow New Mexicans, and all American citizens share.

On this 44th commemoration of Earth Day, the environmental movement will mark Earth Day on Monday with events locally and elsewhere highlighting responses to climate change and other challenges facing the planet. We join in their concern. Nowhere is it more evident that climate change has real consequences for real people and real places that here in New Mexico.

Our close proximity to those natural treasures, bequeathed to us by those who loved here before us, reminds us of our shared responsibility for the health of our natural lands. Devastating wildfires, and severe drought, from which our region has suffered greatly over the past several years, both alarms us, and concerns us that our environment is not an infinite natural resource. These natural disasters serve to remind us that none of us has done enough to care for our natural lands. We call on all of our fellow Americans to practice earth day, and work to protect our fragile environment, each and every day of the year.

Earth Day was founded by United States Senator Gaylord Nelson of Wisconsin as an environmental teach-in first held on April 22, 1970. Nelson, a Democrat, was a lifelong leader on environmental issues, also founded the Widerness Society. While the original proclamation of April 22 as Earth Day was focused on the United States, Denis Hayes, who was the original national coordinator in 1970, took it international in 1990 and organized events in 141 nations.