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Rolling Stone featured a photo of a Pace student from the first Earth Day in 1970

04/22/2020

Rolling Stone featured a photo of a Pace student from the first Earth Day in 1970

It is unlikely that the words “climate change” or “global warming” were spoken by any of the estimated 20 million people who participated in that first Earth Day. But in other ways, the pleas of participants would be all too familiar to us — that we must limit pollution, along with greed, and listen to scientists if we want an Earth that continues to be habitable. “The environmental community was never about public health until the first Earth Day. That was the big line that people crossed over,” says Kathleen Rogers, president of the Earth Day network. “It’s about our health, the health of the planet. It’s about taking action.” Fifty years later, we’re still having the same fights — and the stakes have only gotten higher — but here’s a look at the day the modern environmental movement was born.

At left, a Pace University student smells a magnolia through a gas mask in City Hall Park in Manhttan during the first Earth Day. 

Read the full Rolling Stone article.