Your letters: Earth Day in Wausau honors life and builds a better community

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Dear Editor,

The importance of an annual Earth Day celebration comes as a beacon of hope and determination in our increasingly troubled environment. PFAS in our water, benzene in our deodorants, sunscreens and other commonly used products, plastic particles now appearing in the blood circulating in our bodies and in our lungs, pesticides and climate change; the proof that decades of environmental neglect threaten life on our planet is all around us.

Rather than give up in despair, we choose to honor this unique living planet whose health depends on the rich diversity of life, and dedicate our efforts to living in harmony with its ways. We are taking a small step forward by planting trees, fifteen of them, that will inhale and sequester some of the carbon dioxide in our atmosphere and exhale the oxygen we breathe.

Sponsored by the local chapter of the Citizen’s Climate Lobby and NAOMI of Wausau, we invite you to celebrate Earth Day with us and fifteen tree-planting teams at 11 a.m., April 23 at Memorial Park. In the spirit of Wausau’s Community for All resolution, these trees will be planted by our sisters and brothers from our Indigenous, Hmong, African American, and Hispanic communities, as well as Muslim, Jewish, and Christian members of our family. . We are also thrilled to have tree planting teams from the LGBTQ community and various local organizations like the YWCA, MOSAIC, Citizens for a Clean Wausau, Citizens Action and more.

This is the sixth year in a row that we have celebrated Earth Day with tree planting. We have always worked closely with the Wausau County/Marathon Parks, Recreation and Forestry Department and are grateful for this partnership. Until last year, we could only plant one tree a year, but thanks to a grant from the Community Foundation, our celebration brought our community together to plant fifteen trees for the first time. This year, we are especially happy to have a Community Foundation planting team with us.

Mayor Katie Rosenberg will dedicate the trees and Tony Brown, a member of the Menominee Nation, will bless them.

Trees are expensive. Last year’s donations bought this year’s trees, so we appreciate and encourage donations for next year’s Earth Day. In exchange for a gift of five dollars or more, we will provide you with a cotton shopping bag that you can use instead of a plastic bag when shopping.

Join us as we honor our Mother Earth and covenant with us to walk gently and respectfully upon her so that our descendants have a safe and nurturing planet to enjoy their lives.

Dan Barth, Mosinee

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