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The Madera Tribune

Earth Day rolls around once again

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webmaster | 04/22/13

Today is officially Earth Day, but as we have noted here before, every day is Earth Day if you happen to be a farmer.

Farmers take care of the earth. They have to, or their livelihoods disappear. A lot of city folks think farms should look like gardens or parks, but that can’t be. If farms were run like parks, half the country would be starving and the other half would be engaged in agriculture instead of the roughly 1 percent who claim to work on farms and the 2 percent who claim to live on them.

Of those who do claim farming as an occupation, fewer than half actually produce enough to make a living at it. They are the ones who are good at what they do and have invested enough capital to make their operations efficient enough to pay. The rest have to work in town, or work for another farmer so they, themselves, can afford to keep farming.

But getting back to Earth Day, we all have a role in making the planet a better place. Start by thinking globally, but acting locally. A simple thing like not overwatering your yard can save a lot of water — and now that many of us are on meters, it enables us to save some money, too.

Don’t dump oil into the sewer systems. You can take oil into an auto parts store, which will recycle it for you.

Don’t litter. It blows around and makes a mess, and much of it winds up in the storm sewers, where it clogs up pipes. One reason the Legislature is considering the banning of plastic bags is that people litter, letting the bags blow around and make a mess.

Small things, you say? They are, but taken as a whole, they — and you — can make a difference.

Earth Day isn’t just about getting mad at the Chevrons of the world. It’s getting mad at ourselves for not doing all we can to clean things up.


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