Earth Day: Are you living 'green?' - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather

Earth Day: Are you living 'green?'

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WASHINGTON. - President Barack Obama says protecting the nation's natural resources "not only fulfills a sacred obligation" to future generations, but "also provides an opportunity to stimulate economic growth."

The statement comes in an Earth Day proclamation. He's visiting a plant in Iowa today that makes the towers that support wind turbines.

Calculate your carbon footprint: A carbon footprint is an estimate of how much carbon dioxide is produced to support your lifestyle. Essentially, it measures your impact on the climate based on how much carbon dioxide you produce. To calculate yours, click here.

In 1970, Earth Day was celebrated in the United States for the first time. Millions of Americans participated in rallies, marches and educational programs. They also planted trees and cleaned up litter.

Earth Day was the idea of Wisconsin Senator Gaylord Nelson. He hoped the day would provide unity to the grassroots environmental movement and increase ecological awareness.

It did just that; In July of that year the Environmental Protection Agency was established by a special executive order.

It's a birthday for Earth Day, on this date in history, April 22, 1970.

KHQ wants to know what steps you are taking this Earth Day to live a little more green. If you have made substantial changes to your life, tell us. If you have to tips to share with others, tell us. Just leave your comments below and then look for them tonight on KHQ Local News at 5 and 6.

Gregoire signs bill to authorize creation of biomass projects for green jobs

Gov. Chris Gregoire signed a bill on Earth Day to help the Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) create energy from wood waste in our state's forests.

The bill authorizes two biomass demonstration projects, one on the east-side and one on the west-side of the state.

Washington is home to many overstocked forests that can create fire danger and make forests susceptible to pests. Often, there is also wood waste from timber harvests that goes unused. The projects that this bill authorizes will use existing technology to convert those excess materials to create clean, renewable energy in the form electricity or liquid biofuels.

"This legislation is good for nature and good for people. These pilot projects should encourage a new biomass-to-energy industry that creates jobs, while taking steps to restore our east-side forests to health," said Karen Anderson, Washington's state director for The Nature Conservancy.


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