This Thursday, April 22, is Earth Day 2021 with the theme “Restore Our Earth.” The theme is meant to evoke optimism in restoring the world’s ecosystems through natural processes, emerging green technologies, and innovative thinking.

Due to COVID-19, the celebration will be virtual this year with virtual events for youth and educators scheduled Tuesday and Wednesday, April 20 and 21, the two days before, as well as the main virtual event on Earth Day. Workshops, panel discussions, and special performances will focus on “Restore Our Earth.”

The Earth Day website emphasizes that protecting the Earth is a year-around effort”

“Climate change and other environmental degradations have broken our natural systems, leading to new and fatal diseases as well as a breakdown of the global economy. But just as climate change and coronavirus painfully remind us of the harm we’ve caused, Restore Our Earth reminds us of the opportunities that lay ahead. We must Restore Our Earth not just because we care about the natural world, but because we live on it. Every one of us needs a healthy Earth to support our jobs, livelihoods, health & survival, and happiness. A healthy planet is not an option — it is a necessity,” the website says.