Earth Day: County commissioners urge engagement in activities

Procession of the Species happens April 27


The Thurston Board of County Commissioners (BOCC) officially proclaimed April 22 as Earth Day, urging residents to participate in various events to foster environmental awareness and sustainability.

The proclamation, issued by the Board, underscored the significance of Earth Day in fostering community awareness and appreciation of the Earth’s natural environment.

“[It] serves as a reminder of the importance of environmental conservation and sustainability,” the proclamation read.

This year’s theme, "Plant vs. Plastics," emphasizes the urgent need to address the health risks posed by plastic pollution and advocates for collective action to build a healthier planet for future generations.

According to the proclamation, the looming threat of plastic pollution persists. Approximately 12 million metric tons of plastic find their way into the world's oceans each year, contributing to the formation of massive garbage patches and endangering marine life.

The BOCC highlighted its role in the Thurston Climate Mitigation Plan, aiming to reduce greenhouse gas emissions while improving its citizens' overall quality of life.

Procession of the Species

Eli Sterling, Procession of the Species organizer, attended the April 16 BOCC meeting to receive the proclamation.

“If we literally look at the beauty of the world around us, there is an opportunity for us to recognize that our time on this planet is miraculous,” said Sterling. “It is fleeting, and we should do our best not to get in the way of other people from enjoying that moment as well.”

The Procession, founded in 1995, continues to serve as a symbol of environmental advocacy. It emphasizes the use of recycled and natural materials in its artistic displays.

This year's procession through downtown Olympia is scheduled for Saturday, April 27 and is related to the Olympia Arts Walk festival.

In addition to the Procession of the Species event, several Earth Day events are slated throughout the region.

Residents are encouraged to volunteer and participate in activities aimed at promoting environmental stewardship. These include:

April 20

April 21

April 27

Commissioner Carolina Mejia also promoted Burfoot Park's 50th birthday celebration, coinciding with Earth Day festivities. The park will honor Lily Morgan as Volunteer of the Year for her exemplary conservation efforts.

Morgan, a local Eagle Scout, spearheaded a conservation project, organizing ivy-pulling sessions and tree plantings to restore the park's ecosystem.


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