'Pokemon Go' Is Asking Players to Clean Up The Environment For Earth Day

The event is a partnership between developer Niantic and Playmob

Credit: Niantic

Pokemon Go is celebrating Earth day on April 22nd in an effort to incentivize players to help clean up the environment, developer Niantic announced today.  

A collaboration between Niantic and gaming social activism company Playmob, the first ever Pokemon Go Earth Day will give players a Earth Day avatar, as well as exclusive in-game rewards. Should 1,500 players participate in the event, a 2x catch Stardust for Ground, Water and Grass-type Pokemon will be unlocked for 48 hours. Should 3,000 players participate, a 3x catch Stardust for Ground, Water, and Grass-type Pokémon for 48 hrs will be unlocked for players around the globe.

"Earth Day is an incredible movement and opportunity to team up with friends and neighbors to focus on making the world and our own communities healthy and sustainable,” Niantic CEO John Hanke said in a press release. "We’re looking forward to joining Trainers around the world in their efforts to clean up and preserve the environment in support of the world's oceans and Mission Blue."

"We know gaming can be an amazing force for good," Playmob founder and CEO Jude Ower added. "It’s a pleasure to work with such a purposeful and innovative studio and the inspirational and devoted teams behind Mission Blue and all the supporting NGO partners, collaborating on what we see as the start of a bigger movement towards global solutions through play."

Earth Day, as the name implies, is a celebration of the planet and its enviorment. The annual event began in 1970, hosted by the nonprofit Earth Day Network, bringing "20 million Americans out into the spring sunshine for peaceful demonstrations in favor of environmental reform."

It's not all pleasant news for Niantic and Pokemon Go, though. Just this week it was reported the developer settled a lawsuit for $1.5 million over its infamous Pokemon Go Fest. The money is being used to reimburse attendee costs, such as airfare, hotel fees and parking.