Duck…Duck…Duck…Environmental Stewardship!

By Dr. Mark LeChevallier – May 15, 2013 – 5 Comments

Imagine you’re out for a stroll on the waterfront on a beautiful spring day. The harbor is bustling, the birds are chirping, boats are buzzing by – and suddenly, out of nowhere, appears a giant rubber ducky. Have you stumbled into Ernie from Sesame Street’s dream world? No, you’ve most likely happened upon Dutch artist Florentijn Hofman’s six-story inflatable art installation, aptly named Rubber Duck.

For the past six years, Rubber Duck has been jet-setting around the world – from Japan to New Zealand to Brazil. This non-discriminatory, non-political faux waterfowl embodies Hofman’s intention to make people stop and enjoy life, and perhaps strike up a conversation with the stranger walking next to them. As he put it in one news article, the purpose of the sculpture is to show that we’re all one family living on one planet and that “all the waters in the world is our global bathtub and it joins people together… it also means that we have to take care of each other, you know, and be responsible about this planet as you are responsible about your own house and bath.”

Hofman’s take really does put things into perspective. If you’ve ever shared a bathroom with roommates, you know the importance of all parties keeping a commitment to cleanliness! When we think of our planet in a similar way, it drives home the point that as businesses and individuals alike, we have a shared responsibility to do our part to protect the environment that we all share. Especially now, with the threats posed to our planet by climate change, Rubber Duck’s message couldn’t be more important.

A few weeks ago on Earth Day, I talked about some easy tips we can all do to help protect our water supply, and as the globetrotting ducky makes a stop in the U.S. in June, it’s a good reminder to have this message stay top-of-mind every day. Keep an eye out for it the next time you’re out for a walk by the water…you never know what you may see. And be sure to do your part to keep our global bathtubs clean.

P.S. American Water started a petition to bring this duck to the Delaware River, between Philadelphia and Camden, N.J. Click here if you’d like to sign it.