The official United Nations Earth Day is always celebrated on the spring equinox. But there are many other days and even more ways to remember year round our responsibilities to the earth.

According to Earth Day Network, more than 1 billion people now participate in Earth Day activities each year, making it the largest civic observance in the world. Earth Day Network’s year-round mission is “to broaden, diversify and activate the environmental movement worldwide, through a combination of education, public policy, and consumer campaigns” (

Since 1970 when US Senator Gaylord Nelson founded a teach-in Earth Day (celebrated yearly on April 22) educational Earth Day activities have been big with schools. And recently companies have gotten involved. The office supplies store Staples has introduced paper made entirely without new trees.

It doesn’t have to take a lot of time, money or effort to live green. Everyone can find some way to make a difference, no matter his or her level of eco-interest. The Billion Acts of Green campaign offers many suggestions for environmental friendliness. Google Earth Day to find a list of celebrations or activities in your local community. Many communities celebrate Earth Week—an entire week of activities focused on environmental issues. Some even make Earth Day a car-free day.

As with establishing any habit, choose something that’s interesting to you. And something that can be done fairly quickly and easily. Then just do it…and keep doing it until it’s a habit. Each season try to add something new. Whether it’s using cloth shopping bags or recycling tin cans or putting fewer chemicals on  your lawn, you can know that you are helping to protect our earth.

Want to find out how well you’re doing? Try the Earth Day Network Footprint Calculator.