Friday, 27 Mar, 2009 Environment

Millions of People to Turn Off Lights for Climate Change


This Saturday, March 28th, at 8:30PM people are invited for the Earth Hour, which will be the biggest mass campaign that will demand actions to be taken to tackle climate change. Around one billion people are expected to take part in the campaign.

On their website , the organizers of the campaign wrote that the lights will be turned off for a whole hour on The Empire State Building, the Great Pyramids of Giza, the Petronas Towers in Kuala Lumpur, the Acropolis in Athens, Niagara Falls, Beijing's "Birds Nest" Olympic stadium, the Taipei 101 skyscraper in Taiwan are many more.

Over 1,500 buildings in Hong Kong will go dark. Some of the buildings include the country's most popular skyscrapers like Bank of China Tower, HSBC's headquarters and the giant International Finance Centre 2.

Over 200 buildings in Paris will be left without illumination. Some of the buildings include the Louvre, Notre-Dame Cathedral and the Paris Opera House. This information was provided by the French branch of the World Wildlife Fund (WWF).

According to the Paris city hall, the illumination on the Eiffel Tower will be shut down for 5 minutes.

It is worth mentioning that this the Earth Hour will be celebrated by 84 countries reports AFP.

The starting point of the event was Sydney, where in 2007, 2.2 million people agreed to switch off the lights in their homes. This year, 2,848 cities and villages agreed to be left without illumination for an hour. In 2008 the event attracted 370 cities in 35 countries.

In December, UN-led conference will take place in Copenhagen, Denmark, aiming towards the approval of a new global warming treaty. It is worth mentioning that in 2012 the Kyoto Protocol's obligations to reduce the level of carbon emissions expire and the new treaty is expected to come into force after 2012. Besides, the treaty is expected to provide help for poor countries that are greatly affected by the climate change.

Bjorn Lomborg, director of the Copenhagen Consensus Centre think-tank commented on the Earth Hour event: "Even if a billion people turn off their lights this Saturday the entire event will be equivalent to switching off China's emissions for six short seconds."

He added that candles lead to indoor air pollution, which is 10 to 100 times the pollution created by all cars, industry and electricity production.

"If you use one candle for each extinguished globe you're essentially not cutting CO2 at all, and with two candles you'll emit more CO2," the director wrote in The Australian newspaper.

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