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This Earth Day, Get Outside and Take a #natureselfie; EPA and The Nature Conservancy Partner to Connect People with Nature

Release Date: 04/17/2014
Contact Information: Jennifer May at (212) 637-3658; may.jennifer@epa.gov, Sophia Kelley at (212) 637-3670; kelley.jessicasophia@epa.gov or Rachel Winters at (212) 381-2190; rwinters@tnc.org

      (New York, NY) The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and The Nature Conservancy are teaming-up this April to encourage people to reconnect with nature through the Earth Day #NatureSelfie photo project. People around the country are encouraged to go outside, take a photo of themselves in front of a bud, flower, tree or other blooming plant and post it on the “Earth Day NatureSelfies” Flickr page (www.flickr.com/groups/earthdaynatureselfies). People can also share their photos on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram using #natureselfie.
      “You don’t have to travel great distances to connect with nature,” says EPA Regional Administrator Judith A. Enck. “Nature can be found in the smallest of green spaces, in the local park or in your backyard. This is a fun and easy way for people to connect with nature, and observe possible impacts of climate change. We are encouraging people of all ages to go outside, take a #natureselfie and share it online.”

      “Taking a #natureselfie is a way to rediscover the magic of nature and get back outside after what has been for many a very long winter,” says Stu Gruskin, The Nature Conservancy in New York’s Chief Conservation and External Affairs Officer. “This Earth Day, The Nature Conservancy wants people to spend time in nature with their friends and family, whether that means visiting one of our many preserves across the state or taking a walk around their block or in their local park.”

      The EPA will continue the project in future years so that participants can return to the same tree, flower or blooming plant on the same day each year and take a photo that can be compared to photos from other years. Changes in blooming patterns will be examined and may have a connection to climate change.
      The planet is getting warmer and we are already feeling the effects. The 12 hottest years in recorded history have all come in the last 15 years. According to the EPA, the timing of natural events - such as the blooming of plants - is influenced by climate change. Scientists have a high degree of confidence that the earlier arrival of spring is linked to recent warming trends in global climate. For more information on leaf and bloom dates, visit
      http://www.epa.gov/climatechange/science/indicators/society-eco/leaf-bloom-dates.html

      For more information about this project and other ways you can celebrate Earth Day,
      visit www.epa.gov/region2/earthday and www.nature.org/nyearthday.

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