Photo by Clean Ocean Access

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Written by Clean Ocean Access

On the evening of Wednesday, January 22,2020 Newport council members voted to approve a resolution to declare the week of April 18, 2020 through April 25, 2020 a week-long celebration of the 50th Birthday of Earth Day in Newport.

Last year, Middletown and Portsmouth passed the same resolution and Wednesday’s vote now unifies of all three communities on the effort. This declaration supports an island wide movement and invites the entire Aquidneck Island community to share in the celebration of environmental protection and conservation of natural resources.

Founded in 1970 and celebrated by over 190 countries around the world, Earth Day is an annual reminder of the constant need for environmental activism, stewardship commitments and sustainability efforts. It is a reminder that all species play a crucial role and contribute to the ecosystem in which we all depend, and therefore, protecting all species is critical to the survival of our planet and all its’ inhabitants.

The Newport Earth Week 2020 committee was led by Clean Ocean Access and began back in November. The committee brought together a group of forty from diverse backgrounds including city and town employees, non-profit organizations, local business owners, and individuals from the community. Each member shared the same concerns; the degradation of ecosystems, deforestation, pollution, and climate change.

This year, Clean Ocean Access and approximately 20 local organizations including Save the Bay and Newport Tree Conservancy, are committed to mobilizing the Newport, Middletown, and Portsmouth communities through a series of Earth-inspiring events. Events will include conservation and stewardship efforts such as family-friendly beach cleanups, informational events, artwork shops, tree plantings, and trail walks. Clean Ocean Access will release a detailed Earth Week 2020 Calendar of Events before the celebration begins.

In addition to hosting an exciting sequence of events, individuals and businesses are encouraged to get involved through program sponsorship or making a pledge of sustainability. There will also be a student showcase to present environmentally themed projects which is open to all Aquidneck Island students. For more information and to submit an event or project, please email lauren.dixon@cleanoceanaccess.org no later than March 1, 2020.

Without clean air and clean water, our communities would not be able to enjoy ocean activities. This April, in honor of the 50th birthday of Earth Day, let us all cooperate locally to expand and diversify the global environmental movement.