Hello and happy Earth Day!
Acres U.S.A. was founded in 1972, just two years after the first Earth Day celebration in the U.S. We think of this as more than coincidence, but rather a sign of the changing of the times. The publishing of Rachel Carson's bombshell Silent Spring in 1962 started the swell in attention toward environmental interests in an industrial age. Forward-thinking people like Acres U.S.A. founder Charles Walters, and soil scientist Dr. William Albrecht, recognized what we know today – that the environment, and its effects on our livelihood and wellbeing, cannot be discounted.
Earth Day can be a lot of things – it can be a day where you do an activity, like volunteering for an earth-friendly organization, spending a few hours picking up litter in your neighborhood, planning a healthy locally sourced meal, or even just being a little more conscious of how much electricity and energy you use.
It can also be a day where you take a moment to contemplate the bigger picture. What is our responsibility, as stewards of the planet and its other plant and animal inhabitants, to educate ourselves and put that knowledge to use?
Our Acres U.S.A. family – magazine readers, book readers, farmers and more – are already on the right path, of furthering knowledge in search of the perfect balance between economy and ecology. We are glad you're on this journey with us!
We'd also like to thank our partners during our Earth Day (and Earth Week!) sale – Chelsea Green Publishing. They are a publishing company with a green mission – one that fits perfectly with Earth Day. They publish books on the politics and practice of sustainable living, providing readers with hands-on information related to organic farming and gardening, ecology and the environment, healthy food, sustainable economics, progressive politics, and, most recently, integrative health and wellness. This mission is exceedingly admirable, and we are happy to work with them!
We also have asked some of our friends and colleagues about what they will be thinking about this Earth Day. Here were their replies:
Author, Eco-Ag Conference speaker, farmer, Polyface Farm
"In all the hustle and bustle, the frenetic frenzy of soccer games, birthday parties and bill-paying, taking a day to focus on Earth puts attention on our ecological umbilical cord and our dependency on our nest. Dedicating some think time and appreciation time might just yield some ideas to heal rather than harm, to nurture rather than exploit."
Founder and CEO of Marrone BioInnovations, Eco-Ag Conference speaker
"Believe it or not, I vividly remember the first ever Earth Day (in 1970). My friends and I organized the first ever newspaper recycling drive in the town, collecting 2 tons of newspapers. Earth Day is even more relevant today, especially in agriculture, as we need to produce more food on less land and do it more sustainably."
Author, farmer, Eco-Ag Conference speaker
"Being from Wisconsin where Earth Day started and being involved from the beginning I now feel stronger about the path needed going forward. First it was plant a tree, now to me it's to heal the earth. It's all about 'Better Farming Through Better Soils,' healthy mineralized soils yielding clean air, clean water, clean food. And we know how to do it! It's Biological Farming."
Author, farmer, Eco-Ag Conference speaker
"Earth Day is the perfect time to think about how we interact with the soil, plants, and water that produce our food. One of the best ways I can think of to promote a healthy planet is support soil-focused, sustainable, regenerative farming systems. Know where your food comes from and how it is grown, and make choices that promote the health of the soil, water quality, and balanced, diverse farms. Healthy soils = healthy plants = healthy livestock and people – and a healthy Earth!"
The Rodale Institute
This non-profit organization is, in its own words, "growing the organic movement through research, farmer training, and consumer education." Current executive director Jeff Moyer was the recipient of the Acres U.S.A. 2018 Eco-Ag Award.
"Earth Day is the perfect time to think about the connection between soil health and human health. When we take care of our planet by regenerating the soil, we grow nutritious food that improves the health and quality of life of people around the world."
Good reads for Earth Day
Thank you for taking the time to sit and think with us about the importance of Earth Day. We hope you have a wonderful day – and please consider making this an Earth Week as well!
As a parting thought, consider these titles for your Earth Day/Week/Year reading list (and if you buy them before April 29, get a discount!).
Dirt to Soil by Gabe Brown
Weeds – Control Without Poisons by Charles Walters
Call of the Reed Warbler by Charles Massy
Restoration Agriculture by Mark Shepard
The Lean Farm by Ben Hartman
The Farm as Ecosystem by Jerry Brunetti
The Worm Farmer's Handbook by Rhonda Sherman
Organic No-Till Farming by Jeff Moyer