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Current Events & Hot Topics Current Events & Hot Topics

Lights go out across planet for Earth Hour

Posted by on Mar. 28, 2009 at 9:20 PM
  • 8 Replies

Story Highlights

  • Lights go out over Sydney Harbor as city launches Earth Hour
  • 650 communities in Philippines flip the switch
  • Millions of homes and businesses expected to join event
  • Organizers hope event will send message on climate change to world leaders
  •  

    (CNN) -- Lights went off across the world Saturday as millions of homes and businesses went dark for one hour in a symbolic gesture highlighting concerns over climate change.

    The lights go off Saturday at the Houses of Parliament and the Big Ben clock tower in central London.

    The lights go off Saturday at the Houses of Parliament and the Big Ben clock tower in central London.

    Organizers expected more than 2,800 cities and towns worldwide to dim their lights at 8:30 p.m. local time for the third annual Earth Hour -- a day-long energy-saving marathon spanning 83 countries and 24 time zones.

    Major cities in Asia, the Middle East and Europe had already gone dark for the event by Saturday afternoon on the East Coast.

    The Philippines topped this year's participation for Asia, with more than 650 communities taking part in the event, according to Earth Hour's Web site.

    The light illuminating the face of the landmark Big Ben clock tower in London, England, went out at 8:30 p.m. (4:30 p.m. ET).

    In Dubai, iReporter Sharad Agarwal turned out the lights and sat down to a candlelit dinner with his family.

    "I personally believe in going green and everything that goes with it," Agarwal told CNN.

    In Australia, floodlights of the Sydney Opera House were extinguished as the city's iconic harbor kicked off events for Earth Hour. The event's Web site reported that hundreds of people lined the harbor for a glimpse of the dimming skyline at 8:30 pm.

    Sydney became the birthplace of the Earth Hour campaign in 2007 when 2.2 million turned off their lights, igniting a grass-roots movement that has become a global phenomenon.

    In China, illuminations at major buildings including the "Bird's Nest" Olympic Stadium and the Water Cube were extinguished as 20 cities joined in, according to the official Xinhua news agency.

    Other landmarks around the world expected to join the World Wildlife Fund-sponsored event were the Egyptian pyramids, Vatican, Niagara Falls, the Eiffel Tower, the Empire State Building, the Acropolis in Athens and the Las Vegas casino strip.

    CNN iReporter Marie Sager of Los Angeles, California, said she planned to hike up to the Griffith Observatory to experience the massive lights-out event.

    "A good portion of the city is participating. We'll see the Capital Records sign go out. A lot of these places haven't turned out their lights in awhile," Sager said.

    Event sponsors hoped participating U.S. cities would set an example for the rest of the world. Video Watch actor Edward Norton and Carter Roberts of the World Wildlife Fund discuss event ยป

    "We think we are going to have 100 million people around the world sending a message that climate change is real, and we need to take action now," World Wildlife Fund CEO Carter Roberts told CNN.

    "The world is watching to see what America is going to do," he said, "because if America acts on climate change, the world will follow."

    Earth Hour events got off to an unofficial start in the remote Chatham Islands in the southern Pacific Ocean where locals switched off their diesel generators, organizers said. Shortly afterward, 44 New Zealand cities and town joined in the event.

    Organizers say they hope this year's event will send a message to world leaders meeting Copenhagen, Denmark, in December for a major summit on climate change.

    "We are asking one billion people to take part in what is essentially the first global vote for action on climate change by turning off their lights for one hour and casting a vote for earth," said executive director Andy Ridley. hour and casting a vote for earth," said executive director Andy Ridley.

     

     


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    by on Mar. 28, 2009 at 9:20 PM
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    Replies (1-8):
    ellyc19111
    by Bronze Member on Mar. 29, 2009 at 3:02 PM

    Bravo and kudos to those who did this. Shame they can't all be mentioned personally on here. Myself? For the most part, my street remained well lit. Guess we'll be the ones to blame when there's no climate change.

    dr_m
    by on Mar. 30, 2009 at 11:41 AM


    Quoting ellyc19111:

    Bravo and kudos to those who did this. Shame they can't all be mentioned personally on here. Myself? For the most part, my street remained well lit. Guess we'll be the ones to blame when there's no climate change.


    there is climate change, but i guess ppl debate whether we humans are contributing to it this time... 

    i turned everything off and fell asleep lol

     

    itsmesteph11
    by Bronze Member on Mar. 30, 2009 at 11:44 AM

      Not here, I turned on every light in the house, threw a load of laundry in, turned on both TVs and would have turned on the AC had it not been cold out.  I'm happy!

     

    happy

     

     

     

    canthaveboys1
    by on Mar. 30, 2009 at 11:48 AM

    I was sick so I just went to bed. My kids played hard all day so they were exhausted.

    Canthaveboys1
    christina0607
    by on Mar. 30, 2009 at 12:02 PM

    I couldn't care less about this. Its all silly to me.

    dr_m
    by on Mar. 30, 2009 at 12:15 PM


    Quoting christina0607:

    I couldn't care less about this. Its all silly to me.


    I wonder where all the posters are who said "I'm in"   in the post before earth hour ?

     

    cm08
    by on Mar. 30, 2009 at 12:34 PM


    Quoting dr_m:

     

    Quoting christina0607:

    I couldn't care less about this. Its all silly to me.


    I wonder where all the posters are who said "I'm in"   in the post before earth hour ?

     

    I was in the dark with my husband. 


    realtorshelly
    by on Mar. 30, 2009 at 12:48 PM


    Quoting itsmesteph11:

      Not here, I turned on every light in the house, threw a load of laundry in, turned on both TVs and would have turned on the AC had it not been cold out.  I'm happy!

     

    happy

     

     

     


    LOL.

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