50 years of progress—and setbacks—since the first Earth Day

Many countries have cleaner air, water, and land. But we face a rapidly warming climate, rising extinction, and other challenges.

ART BY ANDY GILMORE

Since the first Earth Day in 1970, the United States and nations around the world have made significant progress in protecting the environment.

However, there is much work to be done, and new challenges have emerged. In this timeline, we examine the progress—and the setbacks—over the past 50 years.

In wealthy countries, the air, water, and land are cleaner than 50 years ago. The task ahead: expand that success, develop clean energy, and conserve as never before.

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