[United States Statutes at Large, Volume 124, 111th Congress, 2nd Session]
[From the U.S. Government Publishing Office, www.gpo.gov]

PROCLAMATION 8503--APR. 21, 2010

Proclamation 8503 of April 21, 2010
Earth Day, 2010
By the President of the United States of America
A Proclamation

In the fall of 1969, Wisconsin Senator Gaylord Nelson announced plans
for a national ``environmental teach-in''--one day, each year, of action
and advocacy for the environment. His words rallied our Nation, and the
first Earth Day, as it became known, saw millions come together to meet
one of the greatest challenges of our times: caring for our planet. What
Senator Nelson and the other organizers believed then, and what we still
believe today, is that our environment is a blessing we share. Our
future is inextricably bound to our planet's future, and we must be good
stewards of our home as well as one another.
On the 40th anniversary of Earth Day, we come together to reaffirm those
beliefs. We have come far in these past four decades. One year before
the first Earth Day, our Nation watched in horror as the polluted and
debris-choked Cuyahoga River in Cleveland, Ohio, caught fire. In
response, a generation of Americans stepped forward to demand progress.
What Americans achieved in the decades that followed has made our
children healthier, our water and air cleaner, and our planet more
We passed the Clean Air and Clean Water Acts, established the
Environmental Protection Agency, and safeguarded treasured American
landscapes. Americans across our country have witnessed the impact of
these measures, including the people of Cleveland, where the Cuyahoga
River is cleaner than it has been in a century.
We continue to build on this progress today. My Administration has
invested in clean energy and clean water infrastructure across the
country. We are also committed to passing comprehensive energy and
climate legislation that will create jobs, reduce our dependence on
foreign oil, and cut carbon pollution.

[[Page 4617]]

We have more work to do, however, and change will not come from
Washington alone. The achievements of the past were possible because
ordinary Americans demanded them, and meeting today's environmental
challenges will require a new generation to carry on Earth Day's cause.
From weatherizing our homes to planting trees in our communities, there
are countless ways for every American, young and old, to get involved. I
encourage all Americans to visit WhiteHouse.gov/EarthDay for information
and resources to get started.
The 40th anniversary of Earth Day is an opportunity for us to reflect on
the legacy we have inherited from previous generations, and the legacy
that we will bestow upon generations to come. Their future depends on
the action we take now, and we must not fail them. Forty years from
today, when our children and grandchildren look back on what we did at
this moment, let them say that we, too, met the challenges of our time
and passed on a cleaner, healthier planet.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of
America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and
the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim April 22, 2010, as
Earth Day. I encourage all Americans to participate in programs and
activities that will protect our environment and contribute to a
healthy, sustainable future.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this twenty-first day of
April, in the year of our Lord two thousand ten, and of the Independence
of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-fourth.