This article was originally published in 2019 and has been updated in 2021 to include relevant information and details.
Planet Earth is an amazing and fascinating place. The only planet known to sustain life, Earth’s unique atmosphere is made up primarily of nitrogen and oxygen. Acting like a big blanket of protection, these gases, along with carbon dioxide and ozone, regulate our planet’s climate and weather patterns.
Weather vs. Climate
So, what’s the difference between weather and climate? Climate is the term used to describe weather patterns over a prolonged period of time. Weather describes conditions in the atmosphere over a short period of time and can vary daily, weekly, and seasonally.
Like the weather, our climate is changing all the time. Some changes occur naturally as part of global climate cycles, while other changes may be the result of human activity.
Much in our lives depends on Earth’s climate and the resulting weather patterns can bring about amazing and even troubling changes on our planet. Droughts, avalanches, blizzards, the polar vortex, bomb cyclones, tornados, flooding, lightning, and even calm sunny days all can provide moments of jaw-dropping wonder or awe-inspiring beauty, though they can sometimes be destructive and dangerous as well.
What Does Earth Day Mean?
Earth Day has been celebrated since 1970, as air pollution concerns were growing and led to further concern around the deteriorating environmental conditions of our planet. This national movement has a rich history and even initiated the creation of the United States Environmental Protection Agency. The Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act, and Endangered Species Act were also all created within five years of the first Earth Day — all in an effort to protect our planet.
In honor of Earth Day, AcuRite is doing its part on the weather monitoring front by helping to educate kids about weather through school events and the broader community through partnerships with local organizations, from fire departments to zoos. AcuRite also invites you to do your part by monitoring and tracking weather patterns in your area. By studying the weather, you will learn more about what drives fluctuations in our climate and be better able to predict changes to climate and weather patterns in your region over the long term. You can do this at home with your own weather monitoring device like the AcuRite Atlas® to track your current and historical weather conditions through My AcuRite®.
Earth Day 2021
With the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, the 50th anniversary celebration of Earth Day was forced to turn into a virtual event. The movement helped people realize that wherever they are or whatever their lifestyles include, they can simply get out to a park or trail with a trash bag and clean up their environment. We all know we can and should do this more often, but at the very least, every year on April 22, we all should try to get out and pick up some trash!
Happy Earth Day and happy forecasting from all of us at AcuRite.