Celebrate Nature

Earth Day takes place on April 22 each year and Arbor Day is the last Friday in April. See below for highlights of upcoming sustainability events that contribute to making Mesa a more sustainable and green community. Whether you are planning a Climate Rally or a tree-planting just for fun, let us know by submitting your event.  Check back often for green tips and upcoming events.


Learn more about Earth Day and Arbor Day


earth dayquote from Gaylord NelsonEARTH DAY: On April 22, 1970, 20 million people across America celebrated the first Earth Day. Today, Earth Day is celebrated annually around the globe, and through combined efforts of grassroots organizations, and citizens like you, what started as a day of national environmental recognition has evolved into a world-wide campaign to protect our global environment. Celebrate the 41st anniversary of Earth Day by attending one of the events below.

ARBOR DAY: It has been over 135 years since J. Sterlingquote from J. Sterling Morton Morton founded Arbor Day. His simple idea of setting aside a special day for tree planting is now more important than ever. The 1st official Arbor Day was created by Morton and celebrated in Nebraska in 1872. In the years following that first Arbor Day, Morton's idea spread beyond Nebraska and today all 50 states celebrate Arbor Day. Find tree care information and more on our Arbor Day page.


Easy Things You Can Do for the Earth Every Day

 As we counted down to Earth Day, we featured these tips:

    1. Check out books available on earth-friendly topics for home and garden. See a listing and descriptions at www.mesalibrary.org/research/links/living-green.aspx.

    2. Paper, plastic, cans and more! Learn about Mesa's many recycling programs by visiting www.mesarecycles.org.

    3. Sign up for our Landscape Watering Reminder subscription service so that you can get a monthly reminder to adjust the schedule on your irrigation timer. The reminder will detail frequency rates for different types of plants in your landscape. Visit www.mesaaz.gov/Home/EmailLists.aspx.

    4. Look into upgrades for your home to reduce your water and energy use and take advantage of rebates and tax credits available to do so. Incentives are available for energy performance evaluations, shade screens, water heaters, air conditioners and solar electric systems.

    5. Enter the "Show Us Your Recycling Spirit!" Earth Day Photo Contest! Mesa residents are invited to submit their most creative photo showing recycling in action. Entry deadline is Thursday, April 19th! The winner will receive a prize package and have their photo featured on recycled truck billboard signs.

    6. Check out books, Nook eReaders & other materials at Mesa Library. It reduces costs and saves paper. Also, be sure to use the virtual library by downloading books to your eReader. Find library locations and resources available at www.mesalibrary.org.

    7. Read labels when purchasing garden, automotive and cleaning products and purchase those with natural or plant-based ingredients whenever possible. Switching to safer alternatives will have a positive impact for you and your family, and will also benefit the environment. If you need to dispose of any hazardous materials, be sure to do so properly at a Mesa Household Hazardous Waste Event - our next event is next week, April 14th!

    8. Attend a Living Green workshop providing earth-friendly advice for home and garden.  Find more details at www.mesaaz.gov/sustainability.

    9. Plant colorful, hardy, low-water use plants in your landscape. Up to 70% of your water use is outdoors, and each water-thrifty plant you install will save up to 550 gallons a year. Save even more water by removing some grass and Mesa will pay you $500 through our Grass-to-Xeriscape program and you'll soon be enjoying a colorful water-wise landscape, lower water bills and no more mowing. Request our free guide, Landscape Plants for the Arizona Desert and other booklets. Contact us at (480) 644-3306 or visit www.mesaaz.gov/conservation.

    10. Pick one day in April to ride your bike to work and celebrate Valley Bike Month with activities. Check out The Great Arizona Bicycle Festival with historic bicycle tours, a kids bicycle safety rodeo and more on April 14 from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. in downtown Mesa or Bike2Work Day and Earth Day Expo is on April 18, 6-8 a.m. at Mesa City Plaza  entrance at 20 E. Main Street in Mesa. Find the best bicycle routes in the City of Mesa Bike Map.

    11. Go outdoors and play in one of Mesa's 206 play spaces. We have 57 parks that include 10 sports complexes, 133 Basins, 5 Recreation Centers, a golf course and 9 swimming pools/aquatic complexes. Learn more at Mesa Parks and Recreation.

    12. Skip the plastic grocery bag. Use a reusable one instead. If you do use plastic grocery bags, please remember to recycle them at your local retailer. Due to sorting limitations, plastic bags ARE NOT accepted in Mesa's blue barrel.

    13. Count how many water-saving tips you already implement out of the 100 available at www.wateruseitwisely.com/arizona. While there, check out the online water audit and lots of how-to's to save water in your landscape.

    14. Order a backyard composter from Mesa's Solid Waste Department for only $5. Composting is a great way to turn kitchen scraps and yard clippings into mulch for your plants. Call (480) 644-2221 for more information.

    15. Reduce your food miles (distance your food travels from grower to plate) by planting a garden or shopping at a local farmer's market. You may also want to join a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) where you pay a local farmer an upfront fee in return for a weekly basket of seasonal produce. Active markets can be found at www.arizonafarmersmarkets.com. To find a CSA near you visit www.localharvest.org.

    16. Mesa Library patrons can now borrow a free Kill A Watt meter that will tell them how much energy their appliances use. Customers who know more about their energy usage are more likely to conserve and save money on their monthly electric bills. Check one out at any of Mesa's 3 libraries.

    17. Plant a tree to provide wildlife habitat, shade, and improve air quality. For a great list of trees to plant, request our free guide, Landscape Plants for the Arizona Desert and our Tree Planting Guide. Just call (480) 644-3306 or visit our Arbor Day page. Arbor Day is Friday April 27th and Mesa will have tree plantings and more.

    18. Save water by using Mesa swimming pools this summer instead of filling up your inflatable pools.  It only cost $2 for youth and $4 for adults for a day of swimming. Learn more about Mesa's public swimming pools.

    19. Turn in your unwanted and expired medications at the April 28 Prescription Drug Drop-Off Event from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Central Police Station - 120 N Robson; Red Mountain Police Station - 4333 E. University Dr.; Superstition Police Station - 2430 S. Ellsworth or the Target store at 1230 S. Longmore. Never flush your prescription drugs as it can contaminate water supplies.

    20. Water your yard just the right amount by ordering our tell-all booklet, Landscape Watering by the Numbers: A Guide for the Arizona Desert. Up to 70% of your water use is outdoors and reducing your landscape use is one of the easiest ways to save water. Call for our booklet at (480) 644-3306 or visit our online version at www.wateruseitwisely.com/arizona.

    21. It's warming up! Want to know how to keep the 'Splash' in your pool? Check out our easy guide to keeping your pool water efficient.

    22. Visit our sustainability site as a one-stop shop for what's available or happening at the City of Mesa to help the environment. Find out about recycling programs, water and energy conservation, Living Green workshops, Sustainability Savings Tips and more at www.mesaaz.gov/sustainbility.


Living Green Events: Earth-Friendly Advice for Home & Garden

The aim of the "Living Green" events is to inform the community about why and how to increase the sustainability of our community, and is part of a larger effort by the City to develop and implement innovative programs to address environmental issues and concerns. The City will feature any events and activities going on around the City. Library Resources include books available at City of Mesa Library on sustainable landscaping, waterwise gardening, energy efficiency, green living, and earth-friendly building and remodeling.


Go Green with Mesa Parks & Recreation


  • Reserve a Ramada in a Mesa Park and get some fresh air and connect with nature
  • Use a bike trail to travel through your community and reduce your carbon footprint
  • Swim at one of the eight swimming pools and save water and energy by using a public pool
  • Register for programs & classes (learning creates more sustainable communities)
  • Use one of our Recreation Centers, Sports Facilities or the Multigenerational Center
    (health, nutrition and recreation are all part of a sustainable community)

For more information: 480-644-2352 or www.mesaaz.gov/parksrec


Online Games/Fun Links About Nature & Our Environment

Check out these fun games and activities about trees from the Arbor Day Foundation.

The Water - Use It Wisely Kids Page features interactive games like Tip Tank, the Water Family, Mission H2O and more.  http://www.wateruseitwisely.com/kids/index.php

The Environmental Kid's Club features games about water, recycling and the environment on this site sponsored by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).  http://www.epa.gov/kids/

Learn to save energy with Tinker Bell and her friends at a site by the U.S. Department of Energy.

Disney's Friends for Change Project Green site is helping kids help the planet.

Find interactive games about land, earth and water on this NASA site. http://kids.earth.nasa.gov/

The alliance to save energy teaches you how to defeat Energy Hogs. http://www.energyhog.org/

Mesa's Solid Waste Management Department has fun activities "just for kids."

Have loads of fun on this site with fun games and activities about land, water, climate change, nature and more.  http://www.ecokids.ca/pub/kids_home.cfm



Green Mesa Home

Environmental & Sustainability
City of Mesa
55 N. Center Street
Mesa, AZ 85201

Contact Us
480-644-4774 Fax


City Site Links

Air Quality & Transportation


Land Use

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle


Related Links

US Department of Energy
Energy Star Appliances

Solar Incentives and Regulations

SRP Energy Saving Tips

ASU Sustainability
Maricopa County Green Government

Local First Arizona

Cell Phone Recycling
Earth Day Homepage

Sustainability Dictionary

U.S. Green Building Council

Green Home Guide
Sustainable Living Handbook, A Citizen's Guide to Thoughtful Living

Valley Metro
Mesa Bike Map & Information

Maricopa County Bike Map

Clean Air Make More

Water Use it Wisely
Arizona Municipal Water Users Association

Arizona Department of Water Resources

(Stormwater Outreach for Regional Municipalities)
Urban Runoff
EPA WaterSense
Watering the Sun Corridor
Layperson's Guide to AZ Water

Climate Change
Climate Change Handbook, A Citizen's Guide to Thoughtful Action
FAQ's about Global Warming, EPA