“The human spirit needs places where nature has not been rearranged by the hand of man.”
As a nature, landscape, and travel photographer, I am made aware with every outing that we need to care for our world. We litter, we leave tracks, and we mold the land and water to fit our needs. As time marches on, it is clear that it becomes more and more difficult to find nature in its purest form. Photographers and people in general, spend money and a lot of effort to venture to lands where they see no signs of man and the only thing they will hear is their own footsteps, the wind in the air, and the birds greeting the day. Some lucky people may be able to walk out their front door and take a short stroll to find themselves surrounded by nature, but there are very few. We have developed our infrastructure networks and our ingenuity, hard-work, and perseverance paid off placing us in our towns and cities. One true night of backcountry camping will quickly remind us that we have hit the big, red “easy” button. Our warm homes, running water, stocked pantries, and functioning sewage system have us living on effortless street. All of our modern conveniences have allowed us to flourish and enjoy the thrill of roller coasters and the latest episode of Game of Thrones. The important thing to note is that we all must pay a price for these amenities. It is natural, and it is okay. Captain Planet was a nut to claim that we need to “bring pollution down to zero.” Zero puts us back before the invention of fire, and I’m pretty positive that we’re not interested in going back that far. Instead, we should concentrate controlling our impact on this world, not just today, but every day. Taking care of our land, air, and water is a 365-day, 24/7 job. Today, Earth Day, is simply a day to celebrate and motivate (or perhaps reinvigorate) ourselves for the upcoming year.
Each of us makes an impact on this world, whether we want to or not. We will inevitably change it when we depart. So let us find a way to help, to fix, to water, to preserve, to research, to teach, to plant, to contribute in making our world better. After all, what would this world be without a mesmerizing landscape at sunrise, feeling the fury of waterfalls crashing to the Earth, or hearing the crickets whisper as stars glimmer up above? I’m pretty sure all of those things are worth both you and me making a concerted effort to care for our world. Whether large or small, all contributions are worth the effort.
Happy Earth Day!
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