For 45 years now, human beings around the world have been gathering to celebrate planet Earth on April 22nd. According to Wikipedia, “Earth Day is an annual event, celebrated on April 22, on which day events worldwide are held to demonstrate support for environmental protection. It was first celebrated in 1970, and is now coordinated globally by the Earth Day Network, and celebrated in more than 192 countries each year.”
It is important that humans, one of the many inhabitants of this planet, dedicate a special time to connect and observe the significance and importance of preserving our planet. Additionally, as architects at Nacht & Lewis, it is inherent upon us to explore and practice sensitivity and care concerning the impacts and connections that our work has on our home, the Earth.
Andy McPherson, AIA, LEED AP, Director of Design at Nacht & Lewis, has a few thoughts to share as they relate to Earth Day and our communities.
I awoke one Saturday morning to a commotion of cars parking and unloading in front of my home in Davis, California. Living close to downtown and the UC Davis campus, this frequently happens. The event that weekend happened to be an annual Earth Day celebration on campus. Crowds of mostly parents and students headed off for a day of picnics and craft fair browsing.
At first, I thought back to a mentor of mine, Paolo Soleri, and his life-long commitment to the planet, community and resources, demonstrated through his efforts to promote city structures that respect resources and provide an enriching community environment. He saw the two as linked. You can’t have one without the other.
With no sense of community, how can we design cities appropriately.
With no sense of value in resources, how can cities be designed to last.
Since people design our cities and structures, then it would seem a sense of community is a necessary first step in developing responsible living environments on the planet.
Earth Day provides an excellent opportunity to participate, even if it is only a picnic or craft fair, in an effort to create a community with the well being of the planet in mind. Earth Day does bring “down to the earth” the awareness we are all in this together and this is our only planet. As simple as that sounds, it is the basic building block of both community and our city structures. Enjoy Earth Day and go find your community.
We hope that you all take a moment and connect with your community and home today and every day throughout the year! Here are some FREE and local opportunities where you can connect and learn about the small steps you can take to preserve planet Earth.
City of West Sacramento Earth Day Celebration (April 25th)
Davis Whole Earth Festival (May 8-10th)