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    22 Reasons To Give A Shit About The Earth Every Single Day

    "Good planets are hard to find."

    1. Today is Earth Day.

    2. So let’s take a moment to appreciate our amazing planet.

    3. A land of ice and fire, and sometimes both: here on Iceland's Holuhraun lava field.

    4. A planet shaped over eons by plate tectonics and the shapeshifting, meandering course of rivers like these tributaries in the Amazon Basin.

    5. Where rivers wander through deserts as well as rainforests – with amazing serpentine turns like the Colorado River's double oxbow known as the Loop.

    6. Where snow and ice mark the seasons – and occasionally bring then to a standstill (such as when ice almost totally covered the Great Lakes in 2014).

    7. A planet still being shaped by volcanic forces.

    8. Witness Hawaii's Kilauea volcano with swirls of vog – a mix of fog, smog, and volcanic gasses – snaking west.

    9. A world where 54% of the world's population live in urban areas, increasingly megacities such as Shanghai (23 million inhabitants).

    10. Where urban development is constantly putting nature under pressure: like here where Cancun's sprawling hotel zone hugs lagoons on Mexico's Yucatan coast.

    11. A world where the occasional green oasis in the heart of a vast city – like this "urban lung" in Bangkok, Thailand – still exists.

    12. Where even the 71% of the planet covered by water is being taken over by human activity – witness these heavily trafficked shipping lanes in the Yellow Sea off China.

    13. A technological world fighting to find ways to alleviate climate catastrophe, including California's Topaz Solar Farm, "one of the largest photovoltaic power plants in the world" at 25.6 square km, a third of the size of Manhattan.

    14. Yet still a planet completely at the mercy of Mother Nature, who rustles up impossible to control bush fires like these menacing communities in Western Australia.

    15. Or majestic, crazy winds such as these three cyclones, Olywn, Nathan and Pam, churning close to Australia's coasts in March, 2015.

    16. And yet, still a world with vast, almost empty wastes, such as Bolivia's desolate and beautiful Salar de Uyuni, the world's largest salt flat.

    17. Or Lake Mackay in the Northern Territory, Australia's fourth largest lake, which only fills after particularly heavy seasonal rainfall.

    18. Or isolated Scorpion Reef, the largest coral structure in the Gulf of Mexico.

    19. So give thanks for our majestic Planet Earth. For the beauty of the snow-covered peak of Taranaki, in Egmont National Park, New Zealand.

    20. The twinkling lights of the heavily urbanized but still occasionally empty USA.

    NASA Earth Observatory/NOAA NGDC / Via

    21. The winter phytoplankton blooms in our seas and oceans can be seen from space.

    22. Our glorious, fragile Earth: Happy Earth Day!

    All images via NASA's incredible Earth Observatory: "Where every day is Earth Day".

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