You’re guilty, so celebrate Earth Day a little early this year

Aimee Lastrella

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Personally, I think it is quite sad that we only celebrate the Earth only one day a year. Especially, when we hurt and contaminate it on a daily basis, but nonetheless, at least we celebrate it.

Scratch that. As a community we don’t. Well we kind of do, but if I really want to look at the CSUN community, I’m going to have to be hesitant in believe in our community’s green efforts in celebrating Earth Day.

I would think that the natural disasters as of late would have ignited a flame under our wasteful butts, but they haven’t. At CSUN, the only thing saving us are the random people that come on campus to collect our recyclables, the Institute of Sustainability (and their projects like the fuel cell and botanical gardens) and the thousands of trees that surround our campus and occupy our orange grove.

Back in 2009, then-Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger threatened the world and California by cutting the budgets to our State parks, as well as to our universities. The cut hurt parks by reducing the funding, maintenance and hours.

Our parks dodged the kill off, but not for long because last year’s voters were asked how they felt about better funding for California State parks via a long-term vehicle registration fee. Sadly, most of you weren’t like me and voted the other way. (thanks, not.) But the battle still isn’t over, it is currently on the agenda in Sacramento waiting on legislative action.

If you haven’t guessed, I’m trying to pull the ultimate guilt trip in hopes that you’ll feel so bad in not recycling and not voting for park funding that you will join California’s efforts to cleaning our parks this weekend.

California State Parks Foundation's Earth Day Volunteer Handbook

Saturday, April 16th (a few days before Earth Day) the California State Parks Foundation will be holding its 14th Annual Restoration and Clean-up. The non-profit’s event will let you soak-up some vitamin D, work on your tan and do something concrete and park/earth-friendly with your time as you enjoy the outdoors.

You can plant trees, pick up some trash or even clean-off some graffiti in your neighborhoods all for Earth Day (or a couple days before). Events are planned for about 36 parks across the state. So pick a location near you and get to cleaning!

In LA we’ve got two events in the county:

– In Baldwin Hills Scenic Overlook, 6300 Hetzler Road, Culver City from 9 am to 1 pm you can help remove invasive plants. Just don’t forget your SPF or your gardening gloves!

– Also at Malibu Lagoon State Beach, 23400 West Pacific Coast Highway, Malibu, from 9 am to 1 pm, the community is welcome to assist in removing waste, graffiti and help with the maintenance of trails.

Malibu Lagoon State Park

I urge to you register online if you plan on exercising your green thumb, so the foundation can keep track of the volunteers. After all, there 100 helpers needed at the Baldwin Hills site and about 300 volunteers in Malibu. Hope to see some of you there!