Earth Day, every day: Tweaks at home, engaging others can cause 'cascade' of improvements in our watershed
A few hours after posting an overview article and podcast episode featuring master naturalist Jon Beam on the importance of protecting our vernal pools, I received a Facebook message from Doug Fessler.
One of nearly 100 volunteers during a recent trash pickup event around Sunbury, Fessler was concerned about a number of vernal pools near the dike behind the city. He invited me to hike through the region, showing off a neat little outdoor oasis marred by a not-so-neat trail of what appeared to be criss-crossed bike, dirtbike and maybe even ATV tracks in and around vernal pool regions, as well as pockets of newly discarded litter.
What is the takeaway from all this as we wrap up another Earth Day?
First, your personal and family based efforts to make a difference in everyday life truly do matter. Humans are the ultimate apex predator, and what we do both positively or negatively can cascade down over the rest of the inter-connected ecosystem -- and greater watershed -- in which we live.
Picking up a bag of trash on a regular basis from your property or local community can go a long ways. Be a champion for the nearest natural resource you specifically enjoy the most, like Doug Fessler does on the outskirts of Sunbury. Educate young people about the importance of making smart moves in everyday living, such as conserving water while brushing your teeth or washing dishes after supper, and then show them it can be done by following through consistently. You never know who might be watching you, and who you could inspire by your actions.
Keep yourself on top of important river-based news and updates. The Middle Susquehanna Riverkeeper blog has more than 130 posts with stories, videos and podcast episodes covering a wide variety of important topics involving our river-based resources.
Along those lines, if you want to help us continue the work we do, please consider donating to the Middle Susquehanna Riverkeeper Association by clicking here.
Finally, don't just wait for April 22 to pop up on your calendar to do something important for our natural resources. Earth Day should be an every day commitment -- even if only for a few minutes a day conserving water, recycling when possible and encouraging others to do the same.
We'd love to hear how you honor Earth Day every day by sending an email to Riverkeeper John Zaktansky at firstname.lastname@example.org
John Zaktansky is an award-winning journalist and avid promoter of the outdoors who loves camping, kayaking, fishing and hunting with the family.