Earth Hour is a worldwide movement organized by the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF). The event is held to encourage individuals, communities, and businesses to turn off non-essential electric lights for one hour, from 8:30 to 9:30 pm on a specific day to the end of March planet. It was started in Sydney, Australia, in 2007. Since then, it has grown to more than 7,000 cities and towns across 187 countries and territories. Occasionally, in years when Holy Saturday falls on the last Saturday of March, Earth Hour is moved to a week early rather than its traditional date. Earth Hour 2018 was on March 24, from 8:30 pm to 9:30 pm.Earth Hour 2019 is scheduled for March 30, from 8:30 pm to 9:30 pm.
In 2004, confronted with scientific findings, WWF Australia puts Leo Burnett Sydney in the spotlight to “discuss ideas for engaging Australians on the issue of climate change”. The idea of a large scale switch was coined and developed in 2006, originally under the working title “The Big Flick”. WWF Australia presented their concept to Fairfax Media who, along with Lord Mayor Sydney Clover Moore, agreed to back the event. The 2007 Earth Hour was held on March 31 in Sydney, Australia at 7:30 pm, local time. In October 2007 San Francisco runs its own “Lights Out” program inspired by the Sydney Earth Hour. After their successful event in October, the organizers decided to rally behind the Earth Hour being planned for March 2008.
Earth Hour 2008 was held internationally on March 29, 2008 from 8 pm to 9 pm local time, marking the first anniversary of the event. 35 countries around the world participated as flagship cities and over 400 cities also supported. Landmarks around the world are off-the-clock for Earth Hour. Some websites took part in the event, with Google’s homepage going “dark” on the day. According to a Zogby International online survey, 36 million Americans-approximately 16 percent of the United States adult population-participated in Earth Hour 2008. The survey also showed that there was change and pollution directly after the event (73 percent pre-event versus 77 percent post-event). Tel Aviv Scheduled Their Earth Hour for Thursday March 27, 2008 to avoid conflict with Sabbath. Dublin moved their Earth Hour to between 9 and 10 pm due to their northern geographical location. According to WWF Thailand, Bangkok has reduced electricity use by 73.34 megawatts, which, over one hour, is equivalent to 41.6 tonnes of carbon dioxide. The Bangkok Post gave different figures of 165 megawatt hours and 102 tons of carbon dioxide. This is a year ago, when 530 megawatt-hours were saved and 143 tons of carbon dioxide emission were cut. Philippine Electricity Market Corp. noted 78.63 megawatts in Metro Manila, and up to 102.2 megawatts on Luzon. The maximum demand drop of around 39 MW was at 8:14 pm in Metro Manila and around 116 MW at 8:34 pm in the Luzon grid. Ontario used approximately 900 megawatt-hours less electrical energy during Earth Hour. At one point, Toronto saw an average Saturday night. Ireland, as a whole, about 1.5% for the evening. In the three-hour period between 6:30 pm and 9:30 pm, there was a reduction of 50 megawatts, saving 150 megawatt-hours, or approximately 60 tons of carbon dioxide. In Dubai, the Electricity and Water Authority reported savings of 100 megawatt hours of electricity. This represented a 2. 4% reduction in demand compared to before hour. The best result was from Christchurch, New Zealand, with the city reporting a drop of 13% in electricity demand. However, national grid operator Transpower reported that New Zealand’s power consumption during Earth Hour was 335 megawatts, higher than the 328 megawatt average of the previous two Saturdays. Melbourne, Australia reduced demand by 10.1%. Sydney, being the city that participated in the 2007 and 2008 Earth Hours, cut electricity consumption by 8.4%. This is less than the previous year’s 10.2%; however, Earth Hour executive director Andy Ridley made the claim that after factoring margin of error, the participation in this city was the same. The worst result was from Calgary, Canada. The city’s power consumption actually went up 3.6% at the hour ‘ s peak electricity demand. Calgary’s weather plays a big role in power consumption, and the city’s weather forecast 12 ° C (around 22 ° F) Saturday night in the inaugural year. Enmax, the city’s power supplier, Calgarians have not supported the Earth Hour initiative, noting that power consumption has changed in 2010 and 2011 (1% or less) and in 2012 no appreciable change in power use at all.
Earth Hour 2009 was from 8:30 pm to 9:30 pm local time, March 28, 2009. The campaign was titled “Vote Earth” and was dubbed “the world’s first global vote” with one billion votes Hour 2009, in the context of the pivotal 2009 United Nations Climate Change Conference. WWF reported that 88 countries and 4,159 cities participated in Earth Hour 2009, Earth Hour 2008 had (2008 saw 400 cities participate). Among the participants in 2009 was, for the first time, the United Nations Headquarters in New York City. In Egypt, the lights went out on the Sphinx and the Great Pyramids of Giza from 8:30 to 9:30 pm. The Philippines saw participation from 647 cities and towns; Over 10 million Filipinos were up to speed-off. This is followed by Australia with 309. Despite official organizers, WWF is stating that the event is not about the reduction in electricity, a number of public institutions reported in their cities to see participation numbers. The Canadian province of Ontario, excluding the city of Toronto, was down 15.1% (nearly doubled from 8.7% in the previous year), including the CN Tower landmark. The Philippines was able to save 611 MWh of electricity during the time period, which is said to be equivalent to a coal-fired power plant. Swedish electricity operator Svenska Kraftnät recorded at 2. 1% decrease in power consumption from its projected figure between 8 pm and 9 pm. The following hour, the corresponding number was 5%. This is equivalent to a total of 1.5 million households in Sweden. According to Vietnam Electricity Company, Vietnam’s electricity demand fell 140 MWh during Earth Hour.
96 countries and territories on 6 continents participated in the event in 2009.
Earth Hour 2010 was held from 8:30 pm to 9:30 pm local time on March 27. In Israel, the hour was held on April 22. 126 countries participated in Earth Hour 2010. In the United States an estimated 90,000,000 Americans participated in Earth Hour as lights, Mount Rushmore, the Las Vegas Strip, the Empire State Building and Niagara Falls. Some cities and landmarks took the opportunity to make more money. In Chicago, the Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA). Mount Rushmore in South Dakota started powering down each night around 9 pm instead of 11 pm. In Vietnam, electricity demand fell 500, 000 kWh during Earth Hour 2010, in the Philippines, 1,067 towns and cities pledged participation in 2010 and over 15 million Filipinos participated in the event. About 4000 cities involved, including landmarks such as Big Ben, the Empire State Building, the Sydney Opera House, the Eiffel Tower, the Parthenon, the Brandenburg Gate, and the Forbidden City.
Earth Hour 2011 was the biggest year in the five-year history campaign, reaffirming it as the largest ever voluntary action for the environment. In 2011, the tagline “Beyond the Hour” was adopted by organizers as a way to encourage people to take their commitment to the cause beyond the 60-minute event. Together with agency Leo Burnett, Earth Hour unveiled an updated planet themed logo that included a small more symbol to the right of the signature “60” which was used in previous years. The 60+ symbol continues to be the main logo used by campaign organizers around the world. Earth Hour 2011 took place in a record 5,251 cities and towns in 135 countries and territories on all seven continents. It has an estimated reach of 1.8 billion people across the globe. In addition to this, the campaign s digital footprint grew to 91 million. In India, Earth Hour 2011 was held on March 26, 2011 from 8:30 pm to 9:30 pm. IST, flagged off by the Chief Minister of Sheila Dikshit and Earth Hour 2011 Ambassador and Bollywood actress Vidya Balan in the presence of Jim Leape, Director General, WWF International. Rosebowl channel suspended broadcasting from 8.30 pm to 9.30 pm to mark the observance of Earth Hour. In Azerbaijan, Darkened Maiden Tower for Earth Hour. The Philippines, which has been an active participant of the Earth Hour, had an early “earth hour” when power was accidentally interrupted, plunging Metro Manila and nearby provinces into darkness. After major buildings, commercial buildings and residential areas in Metro Manila and most provinces while participating channels in the Philippines, ABS-CBN and Cartoon Network halted their transmissions for an hour. 30 provinces and cities in Vietnam took part in Earth Hour 2011 with the main event held in Nha Trang. The nation’s electricity demand fell 400,000 kWh, one-fifth less than the previous year’s. Vietnam managed to save 500 million VND (US $ 23,809) thanks to the saved power. YouTube promoted the Earth Hour by changing its logo, and by adding a switch on / off feature of each video, so that users could change the background color from black to white. One of the least co-operative areas traditionally has been Alberta; in 2008, Calgary’s power went up during Earth Hour. The trend continued in 2011 when Edmonton’s power usage also increased. While Calgary ‘
Earth Hour Global Headquarters was moved to Singapore in February 2012. A launch event took place at ION Orchard on February 20, with the move supported by the Singapore Economic Development Board (EDB) and WWF-Singapore. Earth Hour 2012 was observed on March 31, 2012, from 8:30 pm to 9:30 pm (local time participants). It took place in 7000 cities and territories, making it the biggest growth year for the campaign since 2009. It was also the first year that Earth Hour was celebrated with Dutch astronaut André Kuipers tweeting at various moments during the event’s trek around the globe.
Earth Hour 2013 was held across the world on Saturday, March 23 at 8:30 pm to 9:30 pm local time to avoid taking place after European Summer Time began, ensuring a greater impact for the lights-off event. It was also changed to avoid coinciding with the Christian Holy Saturday, which fell on March 30 of that year.
In 2013, the world’s first Earth Hour Forest began in Uganda, an ongoing project that aims to restore 2700 hectares of degraded land. Standard Chartered Bank-Uganda pledged to help fill the forest with more than 250,000 trees. Earth Hour commemorations in Madagascar had their highlight of the thousand wood-saving stoves to the victims of the cyclone Haruna in the southern town of Toliara, extensively damaged in February 22 storm. WWF-Madagascar and ADES (Association for the Development of Solar Energy) distributed an additional 2,200 wood-saving stoves later that year. Former President of Botswana, Festus Mogae promised to plant one million indigenous trees over four years, as part of his “I Will If You Will” challenge for Earth 2013.
WWF-Russia launched its 2013 campaign to secure 100,000 signatures from Russian citizens to petition for amendments to the current forest legislation. The petition reached more than 127,000 signatures before the Earth Hour event, which was debated in the State Duma by politicians.
Earth Hour 2014 took place on Saturday, March 29, during the same 8:30 to 9:30 pm local timeslot. Earth Hour Blue was launched as a global crowdfunding and crowdsourcing platform for the planet. “It is all about the collective effort of individuals in the world of support and delivery, or their delivery to the world. The Earth Hour 2014 Report highlighted a broad range of environmental outcomes achieved by the 162 countries and territories around the world. More than US $ 60,000 was raised on the Earth Hour by WWF. Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, the launch of Blue Sky App in China,
Earth Hour 2015 took place on Saturday, March 28, again between 8:30 and 9:30 pm local time. The tagline for the global campaign was “Changing Climate Change”, returning to the movement’s original focus to initiate citizen action on global warming. A day before the event, over 170 countries and territories had confirmed their participation; with more than 1200 landmarks and close to 40 UNESCO world heritage sites set for the switch off. For the second year running, Earth Hour Blue aims to raise funds for a crowdfunding platform. This year, crowdfunding projects include solar light distribution in the Philippines and India, and wildlife based projects from Colombia, Uganda and Indonesia. Uniquely participating in the Earth Hour are the inhabitants of Sibuyan in the Philippines who have turned their attention to renewable energies. The island’s source of electricity is a mini hydro power plant.
Earth Hour 2016 was on Saturday, March 19, from 8:30 pm to 9:30 pm during participants’ local time. It was also changed to avoid coinciding with the Christian Holy Saturday, which fell on March 26 of that year. It was the 10th anniversary of the campaign in Sydney, Australia. Östersund in Sweden canceled the 2016 event, following a spate of sex attacks, highlighting safety as a topic for discussion when saving resources. Almost all the countries in the world Earth Hour.
2018 took place on March 24, from 8:30 pm to 9:30 pm in participants’ time, in order to avoid coinciding with Catholic Holy Saturday which fell on March 31.
Earth Hour 2019 is scheduled for March 30, from 8:30 pm to 9:30 pm.
Earth Hour is supported by UNESCO, the UN Environment Program, the International Trade Union Confederation, Woodland, CBRE Group, the National Hockey League, FIFA, UEFA, Hilton Worldwide, Girl Scouts of the US, World Organization of the Scout Movement , HSBC, World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts, Philips, IKEA, The Body Shop, ING Vysya Bank, and more.
The Earth Hour Global FAQ page states: A 2014 study published in Energy Research and Social Science compiled from 274 measurements of Earth Hour in 10 countries, spanning 6 years 4%. The study noted the policy challenge of converting Earth Hour’s short-term energy saving into longer-term equities, including sustained changes in behavior and investment.
Bjørn Lomborg, author of The Skeptical Environmentalist, wrote, “It is vital to make solar and other technologies cheaper than fossil fuels quickly so we can turn off carbon energy. Fossil fuels literally gave us an enlightenment, by lighting our world and giving us protection from the fury of the elements. Lomborg also pointed out the feel-good factor Earth Hour creates, noting that it is an “ineffective feel good event” that makes people feel they are doing something for the environment, while in reality the amount of carbon emissions is reduced by the earth hour is negligible. Other criticisms of the Earth Hour have included the following: