Earth hour 2011 at 8.30pm on Saturday 26 March is a call to action not only for one night, but permanently, with a call to "Go Beyond the Hour". I urge you to join the global movement.
The first Earth Hour was held with City of Sydney support in March 2007, when approximately 2.2 million people turned off their lights to take a stand against global warming. The event is now a global movement, with 128 countries and territories taking part in 2010.
This year, the City again supports Earth Hour and will turn off lights in Council properties, joining over 4400 cities throughout the world. Iconic global landmarks such as the Sydney Harbour Bridge, CN Tower in Toronto, Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, and Rome's Colosseum will take part in this important people-led campaign.
I encourage you to switch off your lights during Earth Hour, 8.30pm to 9.30pm on 26 March-and then "Go Beyond the Hour" by making a small but enduring change that will benefit the planet. Actions could include walking or cycling more, taking reusable bags for shopping, choosing fair trade products or composting your food scraps.
The City is working hard to "Go beyond the Hour" by achieving our ambitious goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 70 percent by 2030. We are developing projects to reduce our dependence on coal-fired electricity, increase local renewable energy, reduce potable water use by 25 per cent and ensure that 66 per cent of waste is reused, recycled or recovered.
To mark its fifth year, Earth Hour is introducing the WWF Earth Hour Awards to recognise and celebrate those who are leading by example and inspiring others to take action.
Earth Hour Australian website: www.earthhour.org.au
Earth Hour international website: www.earthhour.org
Earth Hour Awards: www.earthour.org.au/wwf-earth-hour-awards.
City's Live Green website with tips on how to "Go Beyond the Hour": www.cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au/Environment/LiveGreen/Default.asp