Welcome to April and our annual celebration of Earth Day, a rite of spring that marks the anniversary of the modern environmental movement on April 22, 1970. Much of this edition will remind us that sustainability isn’t a vague, esoteric concept, but a critical factor in our very survival. The Earth Day Network has chosen to focus this
year’s campaign on protection of species to raise awareness of the crucial roles that plants and animals play in the ecosystem and the current threats faced by many of them. This web of life is inextricably woven into the habitats that form our planet’s life support system. Each link in the chain that is lost or broken—from the smallest microbe to the largest mammal—will have a profound effect on future generations.

And so, sustainability is the watchword of this issue of Natural Awakenings, beginning with the excellent feature “Power Switch: Taking a Home Off the Grid”. Writer Jim
Motavalli delivers an in-depth dive into sources of alternative energy, costs, technologies and special considerations—including the availability of government tax credits and the option to make a partial transition to green power, without leaving the grid entirely. What we eat, how and with whom also contributes to the idea that we’re all in this together. Wise Words to that effect can be found in “Ocean Robbins on Personal and Planetary Health”, by April Thompson. Thompson takes this a step further in another article that explores a growing trend across the nation and around the globe in “Potluck for the 21st Century: Breaking Bread, Building Community.”

You’ll find enlightening and innovative ways to connect with people and the planet on every page of Natural Awakenings this month, be it plunging into the woods, establishing a sacred space inside the home, exploring creative art therapies, planting an eco-friendly landscape or taking kids on extraordinary outdoor adventures, even if it’s in their own back yard.