April 21, 2012
By Yessenia Anderson
ASHLAND, Ore. — Saturday afternoon, hundreds in the Rogue Valley joined in celebrations that are taking place across the globe.
Of about 70 exhibitors, nearly 20 are new to the event. Organizers said it’s signs of a growing commitment to sustainability in Southern Oregon.
“People are getting more and more aware of the need to pay attention to environmental issues and concerns. Also, the fact that there’s a lot they can do to take action everyday,” said Paige Prewett.
Local bussiness, nonprofits and government organizations all hoping to educate the public on what type of impact their actions can have.
“If you’re using a non-phosphorous free soap, all that soap will run off from your street into your nearest storm drain,” said Rogue Valley sewer service staff member, Jennie Morgan.
It’s information even the smallest participant can appreciate.
“People need to learn to take care of the earth so we can live longer and so you know we can breath better,” said Nathan Raster.
Children were enrolled in Eco-Quest, a self guided, hands on tour of the exhibits.
“They get a CD and you go over to do activities in the booths,” said Carson Bennett.
Signing the kids up was young Carson, who was born on Earth Day and has volunteered for the cause he said will determine our future.
“If we keep putting out emissions and keep polluting the sky, the earth might become and inhospitable to life,” said Bennett.
Organizers said while early education is crucial the green exposure for adults is what will get things moving.
“They are really the ones making decisions and have the buying power to make the choices when they go to the store, when they go to the auto dealership,” said Prewett.
Choices that resonated with Dominique Sukles.
“The old disgusting oil that we have that you can actually turn it into bio-diesel for cars. I would love if we could go that route or the electric way,” said Sukles.
More than 1 billion people now participate in Earth Day activities each year, hoping to inspire others to carry the same tune.