Have you heard of Earth Hour? Sharon sent me a link for it today, pointing out that the City of Edmonton is participating in the “global movement” that aims to “take a stand against the greatest threat our planet has ever faced”. Cities around the world are pledging to turn off the lights for one hour on March 29th. From the about page:
On 31 March 2007, 2.2 million people and 2100 Sydney businesses turned off their lights for one hour – Earth Hour. This massive collective effort reduced Sydney’s energy consumption by 10.2% for one hour, which is the equivalent effect of taking 48,000 cars off the road for a year.
With Sydney icons like the Harbour Bridge and Opera House turning their lights off, and unique events such as weddings by candlelight, the world took notice. Inspired by the collective effort of millions of Sydneysiders, many major global cities are joining Earth Hour in 2008, turning a symbolic event into a global movement.
Reminds me a little of Live Earth. Remember that event? The worldwide concerts that did so much for the “climate in crisis”? Yeah, I remember that.
I don’t know about you, but I’ve about had it with this event bullshit.
- Can we really say the current warming trend is “the greatest threat” the Earth has ever faced? What about the ice ages of the past? Or periods of space bombardment? Or World War II and nuclear weapons? I mean, come on.
- At best, these events come out neutral in terms of net energy consumption/reduction. More than likely, they probably have the opposite of their intended effect. Think of all the TVs and computers tuned to the Live Earth concerts last year. The same thing will happen with Earth Hour.
- Do these events really inspire change? I would argue that they actually make people complacent – “I don’t need to walk today, I participated in Earth Hour!”
Instead of turning the lights out for an hour, I’d rather see the City of Edmonton do something that would actually make a difference, such as replacing all our old street and traffic lights with new, energy efficient ones.
Read: Earth Hour