Whittier Goes Green for Earth Day

Sam Garcia, Staff Writer

Saturday, April 27, the city of Whittier held their annual Earth Day celebration. The event ran from 10 am to 2 pm.

Environmental groups, like the San Dimas Forestry Unit and the Beekeepers Association of Southern California, were all in attendance.

State Senator Bob Archuleta, one of the keynote speakers at the event, believes that Earth Day is a reminder for all of us to protect the earth.

“It’s a privilege to live on this earth and to live in this country,” he states. “With privilege comes responsibility. It’s about making sure we all understand that this beautiful sunrise is something to protect.”

Many of the attendees, like Raul Almada, have been coming to these events for years. Almada’s been attending this event for “five to six years,” and believes that it’s a great way to catch up with friends and other “people you know.”

“It’s good to come here and show support for efforts to help the environment,” he says.

The event also had a display of environmentally friendly cars, such as the Toyota Mirai. The aptly named Mirai – which Almada notes is Japanese for “future” – utilizes a combination of hydrogen fuel and oxygen, with the waste emission being water.

A Positive Turnout for an Important Day

Event coordinator John Beynon, who’s been running the event for nine years, couldn’t be happier with the event’s turnout.

“This is the best Earth Day we’ve had by far,” he exclaims.

Beynon, who worked for the UNESCO branch of the United Nations for over 30 years, says that the event has come a long way in the nine years it’s been held. In the early years, they held the event in church basements. Then, four years ago, they reached out to the city of Whittier to help the event branch out. The city helped them find the space to hold the event and get sponsors. And sponsors meant more money could be allocated to the event.

We’ve also come a long way in understanding climate change. Beynon says that the International Panel of Climate Change has helped us to better understand what we need to do in order to keep the planet safe.

“We’ve gone from beginning to understand the problem to beginning to understand the solution,” he says.

The hope is that this event will become a Whittier tradition and that people will begin to shift their thinking when it comes to helping the planet. Beynon’s “Silver Buck Shot” principle is that people will commit themselves to lower their carbon emissions, which in turn helps keep the planet healthy.

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