The environmental issues leading up to the first Earth Day in 1970 were:
– Growing use of pesticides
– Santa Barbara Oil Spill
– Factory Pollution
– Water Pollution
– Environmental Deterioration
Forty years before Climate Change went mainstream, the modern American environmental movement begins with Rachel Carson’s book ‘Silent Spring’, which struck a chord in 1962 sparking a national conversation on the use of pesticides, DDT, and for humans to become responsible stewards of the Earth.
Seven years later, in January 1969, the Santa Barbara oil spill disaster became the worst oil spill the nation had seen, up to that time.
In the same year, the ‘tipping point’ event that led to the modern environmental movement, happened on June 22, 1969, when the Cuyahoga river caught on fire near downtown Cleveland, Ohio. Not everyone in the nation knew about this, but in August 1969 TIME Magazine broke open the Cayahoga River fire hazard story Link Here which created the urgency that led to Earth Day.
How could a river catch on fire Americans asked?
And that’s some of the critical behind the scenes history of how Earth Day came to be.