As several people have pointed out, modern Paganism is a contemporary indigenous religion: it is growing naturally and (mostly) organically from the innermost desires and needs of people living in today’s comfortable but isolated high tech world. The desires and needs for greater connection to the natural world have presented themselves in many ways – Earth Day is one of them.
This is the 40th anniversary of the first Earth Day. I don’t remember much about the first Earth Day, but I have clear memories of the environment in the early 1970s – in particular, the air pollution in my home town of Chattanooga. We have come a long way in terms of improving air and water quality, although climate change shows we still have far to go.
Isolating cause and effect in the real world (as opposed to the laboratory) is so complicated as to appear impossible. Earth Day observances may not have caused the improvements, but they were and are a symbol of an increasing interest in and concern for the Earth.
Pagans have taken the next step: from concern about the Earth to reverence for the Earth. It is not just our home, it is also our Mother.
Happy Earth Day!