Hero of the Week: Senator Gaylord Nelson

In 1970, after a decade of social activism and a series of environmental disasters, Wisconsin Senator Gaylord Nelson helped create the first Earth Day and inspired 20 million people to demonstrate across the country. In 1995 on the 25th anniversary of Earth Day, President Clinton awarded Nelson the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation’s highest civilian honor.

Though he is but one person in the vast modern environmental movement, we wanted to make sure we honored his legacy this week. Take a look at the clip above which is a speech Nelson gave before the first Earth Day. Some of us weren’t alive in 1970 but this speech is a reminder that we are stewards of a movement that existed before us and we must work to ensure that it exists beyond us. As Earth Week draws to a close, here are some quotes from that speech that are especially lovely:

“Our goal is an environment of decency, quality, and mutual respect for all human beings and all other living creatures.”

.

“The battle to restore a proper relationship between man and his environment, between man and other living creatures, will require a long, sustained, political, moral, ethical, and financial commitment far beyond any commitment ever made by any society in the history of man. Are we able? Yes. Are we willing? That’s the unanswered question.”

Up Next

Interview of the Week: Adam Kolton of the Alaska Wilderness League

This week, just in time for Thanksgiving, we talk with Adam Kolton, the Executive Director of the Alaska Wilderness League about the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Arctic Indigenous Communities, and conserving Alaskan wilderness.  Watch the entire interview.  Here are a few highlights: On the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge: “This is the area where hundreds of […]

Continue Reading 245 words

Interview of the Week: Indonesian Minister Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan

This week we had the pleasure of sitting with Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan, Indonesia’s Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs and Investment, a title he’s held since October 2019. We asked the minister about how Indonesia is balancing the precarious equation of conserving its rich biodiversity while addressing the duel climate and COVID crises.   Now that […]

Continue Reading 112 words
One Cool Thing:  A Property Bro on a Power Trip

One Cool Thing: A Property Bro on a Power Trip


Sure he may perennially be one of People Magazine’s sexiest men alive (well Michael B. Jordon won this year), but now HGTV’s Jonathan Scott is on a real “Power Trip.”   On Monday he premiered on PBS a new documentary he wrote and directed about how solar energy development is being stifled by what he calls […]

Continue Reading 85 words

Want the planet in your inbox?

Subscribe to the email that top lawmakers, renowned scientists, and thousands of concerned citizens turn to each morning for the latest environmental news and analysis.