Happy Earth Day. On this day to celebrate our incredible planet we have messages and videos from the Prime Minister, the European Space Agency and NASA.
Statement by the Prime Minister
The Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, today issued the following statement on Earth Day:
“Today, we join the international community to observe Earth Day.
“As Canadians, we are fortunate to be surrounded by an abundance of nature. With this privilege comes a shared responsibility to safeguard our environment and the natural treasures we have inherited.
“We want our children and grandchildren to be able to enjoy our majestic forests, breathe clean air, and play by our beautiful oceans, lakes, rivers, and streams. That is why the Government of Canada has taken important steps to protect our environment, while growing the economy and making life more affordable for families across the country.
“This year, families are going to observe Earth Day in a different way, because our parks are closed and Canadians have to stay home. This does not mean we cannot all still appreciate and continue to share a resolve to protect our natural beauty and our environment.
“Climate change continues to present a long-term threat to our health and economy. Last week, we made a historic investment to clean up orphan and inactive oil and gas wells, creating thousands of jobs and lasting environmental benefits. We also proposed a new Emissions Reduction Fund to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in Canada’s oil and gas sector, with a focus on methane.
“Our number one focus right now is dealing with the immediate threat of COVID-19. But this does not mean that we can neglect the environmental crisis. Canada can, and will, build a stronger and more resilient economy by investing in a cleaner and healthier future for everyone.
“We remain committed to our climate plan, which includes ambitious actions to reduce emissions, promote clean technology and jobs, and put a price on pollution. To meet our Paris Agreement commitments, we are taking action so we can exceed Canada’s 2030 emissions reduction goal, achieve net-zero emissions by 2050, and position our businesses and industries to remain globally competitive. We are also committed to protecting 25 percent of Canada’s land and 25 percent of our oceans by 2025 to preserve our natural legacy for our generation and the next.
“On behalf of the Government of Canada, I encourage all Canadians to do their part for the environment and to reflect on how fortunate we are to live in such a beautiful country.”
European Space Agency: It can be done – an Earth Day message
From the European Space Agency: “In summer 2018, ESA joined with the musician Vangelis and the family of scientist Prof. Stephen Hawking to beam a message marking his passing to the nearest black hole. On 22 April 2020, Earth Day, we’re transmitting this poignant message to all of planet Earth – as a message of hope, to say that, by working together, we can overcome this crisis and others facing humankind.”
The message reads:
“I am very aware of the preciousness of time. Seize the moment. Act now.
“I have spent my life travelling across the Universe inside my mind. Through theoretical physics I have sought to answer some of the great questions but there are other challenges, other big questions which must be answered, and these will also need a new generation who are interested, engaged and with an understanding of science.
“How will we feed an ever-growing population, provide clean water, generate renewable energy, prevent and cure disease and slow down global climate change?
“I hope that science and technology will provide the answers to these questions, but it will take people, human beings with knowledge and understanding to implement the solution.
“One of the great revelations of the space age has been a perspective that has given humanity on ourselves. When we see the Earth from space we see ourselves as a whole; we see the unity and not the divisions. It is such a simple image, with a compelling message: one planet, one human race.
“We are here together, and we need to live together with tolerance and respect. We must become global citizens.
“I have been enormously privileged through my work to be able to contribute to our understanding of the Universe. But it would be an empty Universe indeed, if it were not for the people I love and who love me.
“We are all time travellers journeying together into the future. But let us work together to make that future a place we want to visit. Be brave, be determined, overcome the odds. It can be done.
“It can be done.”
Text and narration: Prof. Stephen Hawking (© The Estate of Stephen Hawking)
Music: The Stephen Hawking Tribute by Vangelis (composed, arranged, produced and performed by Vangelis) 2018
Earth Day: NASA Puts Space to Work for the Planet
From NASA: “NASA’s unique vantage point of space allows us to better understand Earth’s interconnected systems and use that knowledge to live sustainably on our home planet, protect life around the world, and adapt to natural and human-caused changes. As NASA joins the world in observing the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, we reaffirm our commitment to understanding our planet’s interconnected systems to help protect them for future generations.”
Canadian Earth Observation
One key part of Canada’s space program is Earth Observation. We observe the Earth to learn more about the planet we live, to help farmer, the predict the weather and so much more. Browse our extensive Earth Observation story archives.