NPR's Garrison Keillor Sells a Whopper: A Billion People Celebrate Earth Day??

Mike Gonzalez at the Heritage Foundation tweeted about this whopper of a claim from NPR personality Garrison Keillor, speaking on his daily podcast/broadcast “Writer’s Almanac” on Monday. He said, “According to the Earth Day Network, Earth Day is celebrated – observed in some form by a billion people every year.”

How exactly do these activists claim that wild number? Keillor seems to be exaggerating a little on the “every year” part. The Environment News Service began a report: “What started in 1970 as a teach-in about the environment has expanded year by year until Earth Day actions this year include more than one billion people in some 192 countries.”

“Earth Day is the largest secular event in the world – and more people join in every year,” the Earth Day Network says. “On and around Earth Day, people of all ages and backgrounds come together to haul garbage, clean up coral reefs and mountain trails, show movies, sign petitions, march to solve the climate crises, hold town hall meetings to plan a better future, and rally to save endangered species.”

“Earth Day participants not only get a lot done, they also demonstrate that human beings everywhere are driven by their faith, their conscience, their sense of duty, or by a moral imperative to save the planet,” said Kathleen Rogers, president of Earth Day Network. “It is staggering to think about one billion people working together in a collective action.”

That claim is staggering, all right -- so huge that it's almost the entire population of the People's Republic of China. We would like to see where this group's New Math is done.

Tim Graham
Tim Graham
Tim Graham is Executive Editor of NewsBusters and is the Media Research Center’s Director of Media Analysis