Last year, over 10 million Canadians went without power for one hour. But it wasn’t because of a hurricane or ice storm. This wasn’t the result of a natural disaster at all. We shut off our power to give ourselves a break from ourselves. We were celebrating Earth Hour – the largest worldwide event organized by the World Wildlife Fund to help raise awareness about global climate change and to call our leaders to take action to do something about this human-made disaster. This year, it’s happening again and WWF Canada is challenging Canadians to take the lead and have the largest per capita participation in the world.
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, 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.
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. (http://www.earthour.org/ )
You can join in. It’s easy. On March 27th at 8:30pm local time, shut out all the power in your house. You can register on the WWF-Canada website and be counted in the total number of participants. They also have suggestions for fun activities you can do with your family for the hour. Last year, I relaxed – something I don’t do often enough. If you want to go out, Trio Restaurant at the Cambridge Suites in Sydney is holding a “Dinner in the Dark.” This takes place from 6-10 pm and last year it was sold out. It’s a great opportunity to take your loved one out for a romantic candlelight dinner.
Tell your leaders that you want action taken on climate change by joining hundreds of millions of others around the world in going without power for an hour. It’s not a sacrifice really. When you do it, you’ll realize just how much fun it can be.