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Local San Diego students joined others across the nation in a “war against pollution” on the first Earth Day in 1970.

From the Evening Tribune, Wednesday, April 22, 1970:

‘EARTH DAY’ OBSERVED

Local Students Join War Against Pollution

The calendar says today is Wednesday, April 22, but to thousands of San Diego students it is “Earth Day,” a day to formulate battle plans for the war on pollution.

Local students from junior highs, high schools and colleges are joining students across the nation in protest of man’s destruction of his world, and trying to come up with solutions for the pollution problem.

Many county schools are observing “Earth Day,” and today has been proclaimed “Environmental Teach-In Day” by Mayor Curran.

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Evening Program Set at Peterson Gymnasium

San Diego State observes “involvement day” today, as a part of its week-long campaign to educates students about pollution.

“Many people, even on tis campus, don’t know what’s going on in terms of pollution,” according to Lance Muller, president of the SDSC Ecology Action Club.”

In a week marked with dramatic demonstrations of how such modern conveniences as the electric toothbrush contribute to pollution, today features a two-hour convocation, and a 7. p.m. program at Peterson Gymnasium.

The evening program will be presented by San Diego State together with the University of California at San Diego, University of San Diego, Grossmont, Southwestern, Mesa and Palomar colleges.

Morning Includes Cleanup of Parking Lot

Students at El Cajon High are concentrating on the pollution of the campus by students.

A 13-man patrol was rounding up violators today, who will be tried by a panel of 12 fellow students. Those found guilty will be punished in some sort of “electric chair,” school officials said.

In La Jolla, students from Muirlands Junior high left school today and headed for the beach.

No ordinary hooky-playing this, the kids planned to clean up Wind and Sea beach.

Frank Thornton, principal of Morse High, said his school is “really something to see.”

“I don’t know when I’ve seen more involvement than this,” he said.

“At least three horses the kids rode were tied up this morning,” he said, adding that other smog-free conveyances included an electric car, bicycles by the score, a bike -drawn surrey with fringe on top, and skateboards.

Teachers walked to school from as far as four miles, he said.

The morning at Morse included a student cleanup of their parking lot, followed by hoisting of a victory flag made by the home economics department.

Horses Make Appearance at El Capitan High

Horses also made an appearance at El Capitan High in Lakeside.

The Cal Western campus of the United States International University, is holding a week of seminars, workshops and teaching sessions on the environment.

The theme of the day is “solutions,” and speakers from the Navy, San Diego Gas & Electric, the city and county outlined plans for card of the environment.

These and other local schools are joining an estimated 700 colleges and universities, and more than 2,000 high schools around the nation in observance of “Earth Day.”

Source: This post first appeared on sandiegouniontribune.com

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