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The Synergy Between Seniors and Earth Day!

April 22 is Earth Day, a date that has brought together activists and celebrants since its inception in 1970.  The really nice synergy with people “of an age” is that you and we know to what the first days of the movement responded and what has improved since then.  Rachel Carson’s book, Silent Spring, was first published in 1962 and sounded an alarm about the toxicity of DDT specifically, but also about what civilization was doing to harm the planet.  The book resonated with the many people who were moved to become activists, and President Nixon responded by pushing for the establishment of the Environmental Protection Agency.

What can you do today?

  1. Since those of us who were part of that initial response to the call to arms can recall the call to arms and the urgency of environmental protection, we can share our legacies with our children and grandchildren…Those of us who were there then. Buy a copy of Silent Spring for the younger generations or talk to them about your own social activism.
  2. You don’t have to be a 21st century eco-activist to simply revel in the green that comes with Spring. It’s not just the verdant colors that are now surrounding us. It’s the bouquets and bird songs of Spring. Enjoy!
  3. Make a specific Earth Day resolution this year. Add one more sustainable habit to your repertoire as we continue to face the onslaught of plastic pollution as well as  the forever chemicals, PFAs, that invisibly are infiltrating our drinking water and food sources.
  4. Increase your advocacy through causes that you can support with your dollars or your time. Plan a gathering of family or friends where everything that folks bring to your party must be reusable, recyclable or compostable.
  5. Make your past experiences learning opportunities and teachable moments for the younger generations with whom you interact. And set a great example by showing them instead of simply telling them how to assure a sustainable environment for future generations.

Now, go out for a breath of fresh air (O2 created by the green plants coming into bloom), and when you exhale know that you’re returning the favor to the plants that count on you and your CO2!

Charlotte Bishop is an Aging Life Care Advisor, Retirement Lifestyle Coach and founder of Creative Care Management, LLC, certified professionals who are geriatric advocates, resources, counselors and friends to older adults and their families in metropolitan Chicago.  She also is the co-author of How Do I Know You? A Caregiver’s Lifesaver for Dealing with Dementia.


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