Our Earth Day, Every Day
World headlines read “1 Billion People Participate in Earth Day in 192 Countries” after the 42nd Earth Day on April 24 – a day to bring awareness to all of an environmentally sustainable future, which is always a good idea.
Politicians love the day. Over 700 U.S. elected officials participated in Earth Day activities through community clean-ups, town hall meetings, tree plantings, documentary film screenings, community bike rides and many, many other activities. Volunteers were out in force with various projects to help our planet. Many state governors were signing proclamations, and our Wyoming Governor was one of them.
However, I’m willing to bet that farmers and ranchers across the nation went about their daily chores and spring work as usual, because every day is Earth Day to them, as most are improving the environment and “saving the planet” on a daily basis. Only, to them, it’s just another day – nothing special about it, it is just what they do every day. One could say the same thing about our Wyoming Water Development Commission and staff, the Wyoming Department of Environmental Quality, the Wyoming State Engineer, the Natural Resources Conservation Service and all of the groups in our state that we all look to for leadership in water and soil, including local conservation districts and their staff. These groups are just a start, and we all know of many others out there, such as Wyoming Agriculture in the Classroom, the CattleWomen and Women in Ag, as well as our ag and livestock organizations that make everyone aware of the good that agriculture provides in addition to supplying food and fiber to the world over.
There are many others who do a great job with conservation – too many to list – but we are all aware of them, from the local school teacher, who takes time to educate their students to pick up their trash, go home and plant a tree and help keep our towns and cities clean. Everyone has their own place where they can help, and by doing it themselves they can makes others aware of the need.
Under the leadership of the Wyoming Stock Growers Association, a number of us met in the Governor’s office on April 24 to witness the Governor sign a proclamation that proclaimed July 12 as Wyoming Environmental Stewardship Day, which is also the day of the 2012 Environmental Stewardship Tour on the Sommers Ranch near Pinedale. As Jonita Sommers said, “We’re proud to represent all ranches out there that are doing a good job,” as have all past winners and sponsors. Wyoming agriculture has been represented well. The sponsors and those involved in this event are the who’s who of Wyoming’s leadership, and this program is just one way they help our nation and state with awareness of the environment.
We’re proud to have a Governor who promotes agriculture so well. As he says, “I’m biased toward agriculture.” Aside from talking the talk in his State of the State address, he walks the walk every day, just like the others in conservation and agriculture.
While we need an Earth Day for awareness around the world, we need to make everyone aware that every day should be Earth Day, just as those in agriculture practice every day.