Today, we celebrate Earth.

Earth Day dates back to the 1970s, when US environmentalists were hoping to bring awareness to the environment’s degradation and set the tone for a new wave of impact and change. Today, the day is widely celebrated in 190 countries around the world. Each year, Earth Day follows a theme, which is typically an area of focus within environmental awareness and protection that requires the world’s attention at the time. In 2023, the theme was “Invest in Our Planet”, calling businesses to shift towards sustainable practices for the prolonged enjoyment of our Earth and its resources.

This year’s theme is Planet vs. Plastics, highlighting the importance of reducing single-use plastic waste which is drastically affecting our ecosystems, our health and the safety of future civilizations. Every year, millions of innocent animals are strangled in discarded fishing nets which take up to 600 years to disintegrate, causing boundless harm for as long as they float through our oceans. There is so much plastic in the ocean that plastic trash is found in 90% of seabirds - ninety percent. At current rates, by 2025, our seas may be filled with one ton of plastic for every three tons of fish. By 2050, plastic is expected to outweigh all the fish in the sea.

The problem has gone beyond bottles washing up on beaches and turtles choking on straws. Microplastics are in the food we eat, the bottled water we drink, and virtually scattered across every remote corner of the planet (A group of researchers from Waseda University in Tokyo recently found microplastics in the clouds above Mount Fuji.)

Some of the world’s brightest minds, following years of research and evidence, believe that the high rates of microplastics present in all that we eat and drink contributes “to everything from cancer, to Alzheimer’s to birth defects and falling fertility rates.” Clearly, the problem is only getting bigger, with corporations continuing to produce harmful plastics at alarming rates, with little to no regard for the long-term effects this may have on our planet, our wildlife, and our own species.

A Promising, Plastic-Free Future

While the challenges posed by plastic pollution may seem daunting, there is hope. Together, we can make a difference. By supporting initiatives that promote recycling, reducing single-use plastics, and advocating for policy changes that prioritize sustainability, we can mitigate the harmful effects of plastic pollution on our planet.

Embracing innovation and technology offers promising solutions. From biodegradable alternatives to plastic packaging to advancements in waste management systems, there are countless opportunities to address this issue creatively and effectively.

Organizations like The Ocean Cleanup understand this plastic pandemic as one which threatens our world, and have pooled immense resources and countless people towards the goal of cleaning up our oceans in grand fashion. In Guatemala, their Interceptor 006 captured hundreds of truckloads of trash in just a few hours in the first flood of the year – all prevented from reaching the Caribbean Sea. So far, The Ocean Cleanup alone has collected more than 9,000,000 kg of trash from rivers, and have made a significant dent to the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, a literal island of trash three times the size of France floating around the Pacific Ocean.

As consumers, we hold tremendous power to drive change through our everyday choices. By opting for reusable products, supporting eco-conscious brands, and advocating for sustainable practices within our communities, we can collectively reduce our reliance on plastics and protect the health of our environment.

We here at Happy Pot promise to continue to honor our pledge of making the world a happier place one pot at a time, by placing environmental sustainability at the top of our list in every decision we take. We are beyond grateful for having built a strong community of activists and environmentalists, who join us every month for our clean-ups around Malta & Gozo. These activities have become so much more than just a collective plastic-picking; we’ve brought together a band of brothers and sisters who not only share our fear for the world’s future, but are actively trying to change the narrative. For that, we thank you, and we hope to see you all at our next one this Sunday the 28th of April at Mizieb.

Let us celebrate Earth Day not only as a reminder of the challenges we face but also as a call to action. Together, let's commit to a future where our planet thrives, free from the burden of plastic pollution. By working hand in hand, we can create a healthier, more sustainable world for generations to come.

For as long as we share this beautiful planet, every day is Earth day.


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