HomeNewsPope Francis renews call for ecological action on Earth Day 

Pope Francis renews call for ecological action on Earth Day 

Pope Francis urged global responsibility for ‘our common home’ and emphasized the critical connection between environmental stewardship and global peace.

In his Earth Day post on the X social media platform, the pontiff expressed concerns over environmental degradation and ongoing global conflicts, suggesting that despite the wealth generated by his generation, little has been done to protect the planet or maintain peace.

“Our generation has bequeathed many riches, but we have failed to protect the planet and we are not safeguarding peace,” he wrote, calling on people to become “artisans and caretakers of our common home.”

Earth Day is an annual event held on April 22 to demonstrate support for environmental protection. First celebrated in 1970, it now encompasses a wide range of activities coordinated globally by EARTHDAY.ORG (formerly Earth Day Network), involving over 1 billion people across more than 193 countries.

“We are called to become artisans and caretakers of our common home, the Earth which is ‘falling into ruin.’ #EarthDay,” the pope said. 

This year’s Earth Day theme, “Planet vs. Plastics,” addresses the issue of plastic pollution. Humans produce over 400 million metric tons of plastic annually, equivalent to the combined weight of all human beings on Earth, with only nine percent being recycled. 

The rest poses significant risks as it degrades into microplastics, releasing chemicals that contaminate oceans, food, and water sources.

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The campaign for Earth Day 2024 aims to raise awareness about the effects of plastics and to promote research into the health implications of plastic exposure. 

It calls for the elimination of single-use plastics by 2030 and seeks to incorporate this goal into the United Nations Treaty on Plastic Pollution by the end of 2024.

The campaign advocates for a 60 percent reduction in plastic production by 2040, emphasizing the importance of investing in alternative materials and technologies to move toward a plastic-free world.

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