This year marks the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, a tradition established in 1970 to raise awareness of an environment in crisis. This year, Earth Day takes on a special significance, with economic activity much reduced, many of us staying at home, and signs from Earth observation systems that air pollution has fallen as a consequence. This has, of course, been thrust upon us by the COVID-19 pandemic, yet against this sombre backdrop we are seeing people coming together in ways we must hope will outlast the pandemic. This is as true in science, which is critical to tackling the environmental challenges before us, as it is in society more generally.
It is important that science be part of the solution to the environmental issues facing the world today, not just in providing knowledge that can inform environmentally responsible choices on a societal level, but also in the way that science is conducted. All EIROforum organisations are investigating ways that we can reduce our environmental footprints, designing environmental protection into our future plans, facilitating the application of technologies we develop for our research that can also contribute more broadly to environmental protection, and coordinating our efforts.
This is why we, as the Directors of the eight EIROforum organisations, support Earth Day 2020, and encourage everybody to get involved.
The Directors of CERN, EMBL, ESA, ESO, ESRF, European XFEL, EUROfusion and ILL.
This statement is available in PDF format.