Press Release

Building on the Growth and Resilience of the Environmental Movement Worldwide Earth Day Network Launches “Restore Our Earth” as 2021 Theme

Under restriction of COVID-19 hundreds of millions take action for Earth Day

WASHINGTON, May 14, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Earth Day Network (EDN), the organizing body for Earth Day worldwide, announced today that the theme of Earth Day 2021 is “Restore Our Earth.”  The theme is being announced after consultation with members of the world’s largest network in 192 countries. Each year, EDN announces its theme for the coming year after Earth Day.  

The theme is based on the emerging concept that rejects the idea that our only options to save the planet are to mitigate or adapt to the impacts of climate change and other environmental damage. Scientists, non-governmental organizations, business, and governments worldwide now are looking at natural system processes and emerging green technologies to restore the world’s ecosystems and forests, conserve and rebuild soils, improve farming practices, restore wildlife populations and rid the world’s oceans of plastics.

While the world waits for global political and business leaders to take decisive action to reduce carbon emissions, natural processes including reforestation and soil conservation can store massive amounts of carbon while restoring biodiversity, clean water and air and rebalancing ecological systems. Restoration is pragmatic and necessary to reduce climate change. 

Restoration also brings hope, itself an important ingredient in the age of COVID-19. The impacts of the pandemic have illustrated with painful clarity that the planet faces two crises and they are connected: global environmental degradation and its connection to our health. Deforestation, wildlife trade, air and water pollution, human diets, climate change and other issues have all fed into a breakdown of our natural systems, leading to new and fatal diseases, such as the current pandemic, and a breakdown of the global economy. 

“While the exact origin and cause of the coronavirus continues to be debated,” said Kathleen Rogers, president of Earth Day Network, “scientists are sounding the alarm that unless we take better care of the planet, we risk more and even deadlier viruses ravaging our communities.”

“The current pandemic has shut down the economies of the world and is causing large numbers of deaths. Climate change is an existential threat to our global civilization. Neither of these two challenges recognize national borders,” said Sir David King, Emeritus Professor in Physical Chemistry at the University of Cambridge. “And both are challenges where the scientific community has for many decades provided detailed forewarning. It is time to switch from the cold war paradigm, which is a hangover from the 20th century based on national military and wealth dominance. Neither provide any defense against these challenges. The alternative is focused on the well-being of all people and the restoration of our ecosystems.”

Sir David King raised the need for governments to act on climate change when he was the Chief Scientific Adviser to the UK Government under both Tony Blair and Gordon Brown, and Head of the Government Office for Science. He is not alone.

Reverend Ed Brown, Evangelical leader and Director and CEO of Care of Creation, a network of millions of evangelicals notes, “Our world is a gift from God himself, with everything we need to live and to flourish. Unfortunately, our greed and ambition have destroyed that beautiful creation. God’s great desire is that we would join with him to Restore his Earth.”

Hundreds of millions around the globe took part in activations for the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, inspired by Earth Day 2020’s theme of Climate Action. Earth Day now turns that progress, enthusiasm, and resilience toward the 2021 theme of Restore Our Earth.

About Earth Day Network

Earth Day Network is a non-profit organization whose mission is to diversify, educate and activate the environmental movement worldwide. Growing out of the first Earth Day, Earth Day Network is the world’s largest recruiter to the environmental movement, working with close to 100,000 partners in nearly 192 countries to build environmental democracy.

More than 1 billion people now participate in Earth Day activities each year, making it the largest civic observance in the world. Earth Day Network works through a combination of education, public policy, and consumer campaigns. For more information, visit

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Denice Zeck
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