Earth Day is an annual celebration that raises awareness of the need to protect the planet. On the first Earth Day, on April 22, 1970, 20 million Americans took part in rallies, marches, educational programs and demonstrations in cities across the U.S. to make protecting the environment a national priority. It paved the way for the creation of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) later that year.¹
In 1990, Earth Day went global, mobilizing 200 million people in 141 countries to lift environmental issues onto the world stage.²
In 2023, Earth Day will be marked by one billion individuals worldwide as a day of raising environmental awareness and promoting action to protect our planet.³
The nonprofit EarthDay.org grew out of the first Earth Day in 1970 and is now the world’s largest recruiter to the environmental movement, working with more than 150,000 partners in 192 countries to drive positive action for our planet. EarthDay.org’s theme for Earth Day 2023 is Invest in Our Planet: The money, ingenuity and resources are available to make the investments the planet needs – but we all need to step forward and contribute our part.
Toyota and Earth Day – Respect for the Planet
Toyota has long been committed to doing our part to protect the environment. Respect for the planet is one of our company’s core values. These aren’t just words for a noble cause; they are a vital responsibility and priority. It is imperative for our business today that environmental sustainability strategies are implemented across all areas of our operations. And it is imperative for our business tomorrow that we look forward and outward, engaging with multiple stakeholders to help address global challenges.
The Toyota Environmental Challenge 2050 (Challenge 2050) outlines Toyota’s long-term aspirations for environmental sustainability. Challenge 2050 is a set of six visionary, global challenges that seek to go beyond eliminating negative environmental impacts to creating positive value for the planet and society. It is the most demanding and most inspiring set of environmental commitments Toyota has ever made. It includes a commitment to achieving carbon neutrality across our vehicle life cycle, plus commitments to support a circular economy, conserve water, and protect species and restore habitats.
Through Challenge 2050, employees across the company, in every region of the world, are working to put Toyota’s global vision of Respect for the Planet into action. Challenge 2050 unites us all with a common purpose – to be more than just good stewards of the environment and to create positive changes beyond our facility boundaries. Through our commitment to respect for the planet, to us, Earth Day is every day.
Toyota Celebrates Earth Month
At Toyota, we don’t just celebrate Earth Day on April 22; we celebrate Earth Month during the entire month of April. Throughout the month, environmental activities are planned at our sites across the region and in our communities.
A few examples:
At our headquarters campus in Plano, Texas, activities for employees and their families include:
- Learning about vehicle battery recycling
- Volunteering at Fish Trap Lake Park to assist the National Environmental Education Foundation (NEEF) with educating teens about water quality and environmental careers
At our assembly plant and engineering center in Georgetown, Kentucky, activities for employees and their families include:
- An Adopt-a-Highway cleanup
- Bird and wildflower identification walks along the site’s nature trail
- A tree sapling giveaway
- A compost workshop
At the R&D Facility in Ann Arbor, Michigan, activities for employees and their families include:
- Learning about the Green Things Farm Collective
- Going on an environmental scavenger hunt
- Learning about composting and recycling
- Chances to win prizes, such as passes to the Detroit Zoo
At the assembly plants in Cambridge and Woodstock, Ontario (Canada), activities for employees and their families include:
- An art contest with a recycling theme
- An electronics waste collection event
- An electric vehicle expo
- A bZ4X weekend giveaway
Crossword puzzles, word scrambles, nature walks, outdoor step challenges, local park cleanups, compost bin giveaways and household hazardous waste collections are some of the other activities that our sites in the U.S., Canada and Mexico are offering to employees and their families as well as members of the local communities to honor Earth Day.
Originally published April 20, 2023