Earth Day: Looking back on President George H.W. Bush’s trip to Birmingham-Southern College

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Courtesty: Birmingham-Southern College

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — On the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, CBS 42 takes a look back on the special meaning this event has on Birmingham-Southern College and its surrounding communities.

On April 20, 1990, just two days before the 20th Earth Day, President George H.W. Bush made a trip down to Birmingham for a special reason: to present Birmingham-Southern College Conservancy the Point of Light award.

During his presentation of the award, President Bush gave praise to the students, faculty, and staff for working with their local communities to help clean up Birmingham.

“By enlisting elementary schools in neighborhood beautification efforts and working with the Cahaba River Society to involve inner-city youngsters in cleanup efforts,” Bush said, “you are not only working to enhance our environment, you’re also imparting your love for nature and concern for its well-being to the environment’s future custodians, our youngest citizens.”

Not only was the conservancy named a Point of Light for their efforts, but it was also the location President Bush signed his proclamation to declare April as National Recycling Month.

“Among the many efforts this organization has undertaken, recycling is one of the finest,” said President Bush. “And I thought, therefore, it would be most fitting to have your organization and, indeed, this school be present for the signing of the proclamation designating April as National Recycling Month. And so, I’m delighted to do it. I can think of no more appropriate place to do it, inspired as I am by the work of all of you involved in this great conservation effort.”

Thirty years later, efforts are still being made to improve and protect Birmingham’s environment. The Alabama Environmental Council and Alabama Rivers Alliance have teamed up to form a pledge to protect Alabama’s environment for the next 50 years and beyond.

The pledge is calling on individuals, businesses, leaders, and public officials to do what they can to support “clean water, air, and land for all Alabamians.” Click here for the full pledge.

Have a cool idea on how to celebrate Earth Day while at home? Share them with me on Twitter: @NickErebia.


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