Hundreds of Marin residents have already registered to attend a free, fun-filled, family-oriented Earth Day celebration coming up later this month in Mill Valley.
The event, called “Earth 2050: Create a Better World,” combines music, art, games, interactive displays and a host of experts in all things green.
The music stage features folk and blues singer Maria Muldaur, of Midnight at the Oasis fame. Local singer-songwriter Matt Jaffe will also be performing.
Anyone who loves to cook won’t want to miss the talk by Anne Marie Bonneau. Known as The Zero Waste Chef, Bonneau shares ingenious and fun tips to reduce waste in the kitchen while creating delicious meals. Another feather in Bonneau’s cap is that she went plastic-free in 2011.
Kids will love the earth-themed carnival games. At the huge Earth Wheel, they can paint and see their artwork displayed on the wheel.
Earth 2050 promises to be all fun and games, yet event organizers hope the celebration inspires people to imagine a more sustainable world, and then take action to make it happen. Green Change, the nonprofit group behind Earth 2050, says everyone, young or old, can easily participate in reducing climate change.
Fabrice Florin founded Green Change, a climate action network, in 2019. Basically, the network consists of a group of people who want to take action to reduce the threat of the climate crisis.
“We support one another by engaging and informing—bringing experts and newbies together,” Florin said. “Behavioral science confirms that change is hard for humans. It’s not about rewards or rebates, it’s about whether your neighbors are doing it. We want to be part of the herd.”
Though Green Change started as a local Marin group, it grew quickly during the pandemic. The organization began holding Zoom meetings and members put energy into developing the website and social media accounts. Today, people from around the world participate in Green Change.
“People helping each other out,” Florin said. “I guess it’s contagious.”
Green Change members credit the organization’s success to sharing information in a constructive, not critical manner. Although climate change is often a scary topic to address honestly, people become engaged more easily with a positive approach.
“It’s clear the climate crisis is a very serious threat to life on earth,” Florin said. “If we do nothing, we’ll be in really bad shape by 2050. By making a green change in our lives, we’re working to slow down climate change. If we do it with our neighbors, we can find joy in the process.”
Florin and his wife have cut their carbon footprint in half over the past few years by buying an electric car, canceling planned flights, becoming vegetarian and replacing their water heater with a heat pump. Some of those measures come with a hefty price tag, though Florin points out he has received rebates for the new car and heat pump.
Still, there are climate actions for every budget. Green Change suggests switching to LED light bulbs, eating less meat, hanging wash on a line to dry and stopping junk mail. Every step makes a difference.
The Earth 2050 event showcases many ways to reduce climate change and protect the future of the world. And, of course, there’s great music, art, games and more.
Earth 2050 will be held on Sunday, April 24, at the Mill Valley Community Center, 180 Camino Alto.