Get ready for 'Earth Hour'!

Discussion in 'The Water Cooler' started by kemical, Mar 21, 2010.

  1. kemical

    kemical Windows Forum Admin
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    On the 27th March @ 8.30pm is 'Earth Hour' and the WWF (World wildlife fund) is asking everyone to turn off there lights ect for one hour:

    ABOUT EARTH HOUR

    Earth Hour started in 2007 in Sydney, Australia when 2.2 million homes and businesses turned their lights off for one hour to make their stand against climate change. Only a year later and Earth Hour had become a global sustainability movement with more than 50 million people across 35 countries participating. Global landmarks such as the, Sydney Harbour Bridge, The CN Tower in Toronto, The Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, and Rome’s Colosseum, all stood in darkness, as symbols of hope for a cause that grows more urgent by the hour.
    [​IMG]
    In March 2009, hundreds of millions of people took part in the third Earth Hour. Over 4000 cities in 88 countries officially switched off to pledge their support for the planet, making Earth Hour 2009 the world’s largest global climate change initiative.
    Earth Hour 2010 takes place on Saturday 27 March at 8.30pm (local time) and is a global call to action to every individual, every business and every community throughout the world. It is a call to stand up, to take responsibility, to get involved and lead the way towards a sustainable future. Iconic buildings and landmarks from Europe to Asia to the Americas will stand in darkness. People across the world from all walks of life will turn off their lights and join together in celebration and contemplation of the one thing we all have in common – our planet. So sign up now and let’s make 2010 the biggest Earth Hour yet!.
    It’s Showtime! Show the world what can be done. :

    Earth Hour - Earth Hour 2010 Global Site
     
  2. kemical

    kemical Windows Forum Admin
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    Earth Hour - climate change campaigners urge global switch-off



    The fourth annual lights-out event expects 1 billion participants, and counts for the first time international landmarks including the Eiffel Tower, the Empire State building and the Burj Khalifa

    [​IMG] The Houses of Parliament during Earth Hour 2009 Photograph: Leon Neal/AFP/Getty Images

    The biggest turn-off in human history will start at 8.30pm tomorrow in Chatham, a tiny South Pacific island with only 12 street lamps.
    Almost 25 hours later, but at 9.30pm the same day, it will finish on the other side of the international dateline in the Galapagos Islands, where scientists at the Charles Darwin Research Station will share a candle-lit dinner with several hundred locals and environmental activists.
    In between, Earth Hour – the annual worldwide call for action against climate change – will spread darkness across all seven continents, drawing in 120 nations, 1,700 municipalities and hundreds of millions of people, including supermodels, archbishops, and footballers.
    In the UK, many hotels and restaurants will be offering special candle-lit dinners where guests will be able to watch well-known sites plunge into blackness, including Big Ben, Edinburgh Castle, Wales's Millennium Stadium, Belfast City Hall, Durham Cathedral, St Paul's Cathedral and the London Eye.
    Now in its fourth year, the event organised by the World Wide Fund for Nature, has spread an ever-widening expanse of hour-long darkness. Two million people took part at the first switch-off in Sydney in 2007. Last year, hundreds of millions participated in 88 countries. This year, organisers expect the figure to be close to a billion.
    Beijing's Forbidden City and London's Houses of Parliament, the Eiffel Tower, the Hiroshima Peace Memorial, the Empire State Building, Rio de Janeiro's Christ the Redeemer statue, and the world's tallest building, Burj Khalifa. will all plunge into darkness.
    Nations that have signed up for the first time this year include Saudi Arabia – long seen as resistant to climate change action – Mongolia, Nepal and the Czech Republic.
    Another debutant is a first group of participants from Antarctica: the Davis Research Station, which is home to several dozen scientists who presumably will not be also switching off their heaters in -10 degrees Celsius.
    James Leape, the director general of the WWF, said the worldwide event was particularly important after the disappointment of the climate conference in Copenhagen last year.
    "There was a sense after Copenhagen that we, as a world, had lost momentum," he told the Guardian. "One of the important things about this year is that it is a chance for people to say 'Hey, we are still concerned about climate change.' A lot of people are looking for an opportunity. If they speak out by themselves, it may not make much of an impact, but through this shared action of Earth Hour, they have a platform to speak."
    Leape is in Beijing to attend a darkening ceremony at the Forbidden City, the 600-year-old symbol of Chinese power.
    Last year, China's support for Earth Hour was conflicted by the timing of the event, which coincided with the anniversary of the Tibetan unrest in 2008, prompting some organisations – including Peking university - to warn students not to get involved.
    This year, with no such complications, participation is enthusiastic. Fifteen Chinese cities, including Beijing, Shanghai, Chengdu and Dalian, have signed up. Pandas in Sichuan will be involved, along with cartoon characters in Hong Kong, and rock bands in Xiamen. Chinese organisers are using the event to kick-off a "low-carbon lifestyle week" aimed at persuading consumers in the world's most populous country not to follow the wasteful example of developed nations.
    The message is catching on at the grassroots. Among the events in the former Chinese capital of Xian, will be a free unplugged music concert.

    Across the world, people are expected to mark the event in ways that reflect the diversity, creativity and inequality of the human population. In cities like Tokyo, Seoul and New York, netizens are being asked to record the switch-off of landmark buildings on their mobile phones and upload them online. In Zimbabwe, hundreds of children will join a candle-lit picnic at Victoria Falls. In Canada, an Earth Hour Blackberry application has proved a hit. Elsewhere, the world's highest paid supermodel, Gisele Bündchen and World Cup-winning footballer Francesco Totti will act as spokespeople for the event, along with South Africa's archbishop Desmond Tutu.
    Not everywhere is going dark. Tanzania initially did not sign up because few would notice a switch off in Dar es Salaam and other cities where only 10% of people have electricity. Instead, WWF organised a "switch on" of solar energy for a local school last year. It will scale this up to 20 schools this year.
    In Madagascar, 99% of the country has no electricity and people are frightened to be on the streets after dark because of the instability that has followed the political crisis. But WWF say locals have asked to participate.
    "There are only 12 street lights on the Chatham Islands and for safety reasons these will remain on," said Pickles. Organisers said locals would enjoy making the news, but the event would have to compete with a 21st birthday party at the one hotel in town.
    "A lot of people will be there," said Lee Barry, Earth Hour Project Manager in New Zealand. "Hopefully someone will remember to turn the lights off."

    Earth Hour - climate change campaigners urge global switch-off | Environment | guardian.co.uk
     

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