Saturday, March 31, 2012

Under Cover of Darkness, Save the Planet for an Hour

Photo by Andreas Eistert
Berlin's famous Brandenburg Gate will be among the world landmarks that will "go dark" for an hour tonight as part of "Earth Hour," an international effort to focus attention on energy use and climate change.

We only have one planet.

You can help protect it.

All you have to do is turn off the lights.


Photos Courtesy of Eduardo
The Golden Gate Bridge in San Franscico -- steel
for which was fabricated right here in Pottstown's own
Bethlehem Steel works -- 'before' (top) and 'after' it
went "dark"
for an hour during 2010's Earth Hour.
It will go dark again
at 8:30 p.m. 
Tonight, starting at 8:30 p.m., people are being asked to turn off the lights for just one hour as a way to demonstrate how much energy we use at any given time, and how much a more judicious use of that energy, even for just an hour, can have a positive effect on climate change.

It's called Earth Hour.

Earth Hour is a global environmental initiative in partnership with World Wildlife Federation and Leo Burnett and is billed as the world’s largest single campaign for the planet; a collective display of commitment to a better future for the planet.

Earth Hour began in one city in 2007 and by 2011 reached over 1.8 billion people in 135 countries across every continent, receiving reports as ‘the World’s largest campaign for the planet’ 

Individuals, businesses, governments and communities are invited to turn out their lights for one hour on Saturday March 31, 2012 at 8:30 PM to show their support for environmentally sustainable action.
Photo Courtesy of Earth Hour:
Our energy use, seen from space,
shows up even in even wilderness areas like the Alps

In 2012, Earth Hour’s "I Will If You Will" concept invites individuals and organizations to challenge others to an ongoing environmental commitment beyond the hour.

Click here to learn more about that initiative.

The Earth Hour City Challenge encourages cities to prepare for the costly impacts of climate-related extreme weather and to reduce their carbon footprint.

You can be an integral part in this challenge. 

Here is a video put together by the World Wildlife Fund about Earth Hour:

From the Eiffel Tower in Paris to the Empire State Building in New York City, the world’s tallest building the Burj Khalifa to the Leaning Tower in Pisa in Italy – at 8:30PM on March 31, the most visually captivating icons will go dark for Earth Hour 2012.
Photo by Nina Munn/WWF
Volunteers from last year's Earth Hour event at the Eiffel Tower

The Sydney Harbour Bridge and Opera House, the first landmarks to ever go dark for the lights out event, will switch off for the sixth year straight, before landmarks across Asia including the Great Wall of China, the Bird’s Nest in Beijing, the Tokyo Tower, Taipei 101 and the Lumbini Sacred Garden in Nepal celebrate their actions for the planet.

The Indian subcontinent will undertake its biggest Earth Hour yet, as India Gate switches off before Earth Hour makes its way through the Middle East, where the world’s tallest building in Dubai will go dark for one hour.

Just five months after the end of the Libyan uprising, more than 600 individuals are expected to gather outside Libya’s Museum in the very first Earth Hour event in that country.

Photo Courtesy of WWF Brazil
The Christ Redeemer Statue in Rio de Janiero, Brazil
In another extreme, Earth Hour will extend to the International Space Station for the first time, where astronaut and WWF ambassador Andre Kuipers will experience Earth Hour watching over the planet for the the European Space Agency (ESA).

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has confirmed that the headquarters of the United Nations will be switching off as he urged the rest of the world to take part,“Turning off our lights is a symbol of our commitment to sustainable energy for all, we need to fuel our future with clean, efficient and affordable energy.”

Australian Supermodel Miranda Kerr
is Earth Hour's Global
Ambassador for 2012
“In 2012, Earth Hour is reaching further and wider than ever before and these landmarks will provide a visually spectacular reminder of what can be done when individuals, organizations and governments act together,” said Andy Ridley, Co-Founder and Executive Director of Earth Hour.

From the picturesque Table Mountains in Cape Town right up to National Library of Belarus, Europe and Africa will stand together. Dubrovnik city walls in Croatia, the Eiffel Tower and the Louvre in Paris, Berlin’s Brandenburg Gate, the Leaning Tower of Pisa and the Vatican will also join the world’s largest voluntary action for the environment.

Buckingham Palace, Tower Bridge, the Houses of Parliament and Big Ben in London will be the main landmarks in the United Kingdom to go dark, before Earth Hour makes its way across the Atlantic Ocean to South America, with Rio’s epic Christ the Redeemer statue and the Ángel de la Independencia in Mexico providing the backdrop for what will be some of the most spectacular celebrations for La Hora Del Planeta that night.

The Big Apple will also have its most famous landmarks take part, with the American Eagle and NASDAQ buildings in Times Square switching off, alongside New York City’s famous Empire State Building. The bright lights of the Las Vegas Strip will also go dark for the hour.

Director General of UNESCO Irina Bokova has also personally urged all 938 World Heritage across the globe to switch off on March 31 at 8:30 PM.

As an open sourced campaign, Earth Hour uses social media to connect a global community of people inspired to change the world we live in.
We only have one.

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