Earthhour was last Saturday night. Did you turn out your lights for the hour from 8.30pm to 9.30pm?
We had extra excitement here in Fawkner near Major Rd. A blackout in the local electricity grid enforced a measure of compliance slightly later in the evening. Those who had already participated in earth hour would have been well prepared with candles, matches and flashlights.
The electricity was down for perhaps 40 minutes, but provided a unique time to see the stars and the night sky more clearly from suburbia.
Around the world hundreds of millions of people participated in earth hour or were part of earth hour events to raise the profile and light the way on climate change. It isn’t the saving of power that is important (although those who control our grid now factor in the drop in demand over earthhour itself), but the symbolism involved in people calling for action to curtail the environmental degradation of the earth’s life systems and the looming threat posed by climate change.
People in about 172 countries participated in the earthhour event.
“From the Earth’s extremes to outer space, people came together to send a clear message that action on climate is on top of their agenda. Earth Hour confirms our belief that in order to change climate change we need to act together. WWF will continue to do its share to shape strong, global climate solutions,” said Sudhanshu Sarronwala, Chair, Board of Directors, Earth Hour Global.
According to the WWF, in Moscow the Kremlin switched off the lights while citizens switched on their power for change by collecting close to 70,000 signatures to petition a moratorium on the exploration of Arctic oil.
In Malaysia, citizens attended the first-ever Earth Hour 2015 carnival in Petaling Jaya and answered the call to come out in large numbers to show their support for a city council declaration to reduce carbon emissions by 25 per cent within the next five years.
Here is UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon urging participation in Earth hour in 2015. “No individual action is too small, no collective vision is too big. This is the time to use your power. Join the global movement to change climate change….Together let’s make climate change history.”
Over 1,400 landmarks switched off the lights on Saturday including the Empire State Building and the United Nations Headquarters in New York, the Eiffel Tower in Paris, the Burj Khalifa in Dubai, the Sydney Harbour Bridge and Hong Kong’s iconic skyline. Close to 40 UNESCO World Heritage sites such as the Acropolis in Athens, the walled city of Baku, the Cologne Cathedral and the Galapagos Islands also participated.
Earthhour started in Sydney in 2007. It has proven to be a powerful symbol of education in motivating change for more sustainable choices.
So, if you turned out your lights, you were a small part of this too. To read more and see photos and videos of earth hour visit http://www.earthhour.org/media-centre