If you blinked, you might have missed Earth Hour on Saturday night. According to the website, “On Earth Hour hundreds of millions of people around the world will come together to call for action on climate change by doing something quite simple—turning off their lights for one hour. The movement symbolizes that by working together, each of us can make a positive impact in this fight, protecting our future and that of future generations.”
I’d heard of it in the past, but it fell off my radar this year. At about 7:30pm on Saturday, as we were preparing a VERY late dinner after a full day of hiking, Matthew happened to see something about it. When the appointed hour rolled around (8:30pm), we sat down to a candlelight dinner. So far, so good. We finished eating by 9:05pm, at which point I just wanted to sit on the couch and read.
If you follow the link above to the Earth Hour website, they display before and after photos around the world. Most of the photos focus on recognizable sites. While it’s cool to see, and I get the symbolic aspect of it, it feels more like paying lip service to the environmental problems that we face. At 9:30pm, everyone flips the switch and the status quo continues. What about the other 23 hours in the day? What about the other 364 days in the year?
While I know my attempts are far from perfect, I strive to live those other 8759 hours as “Earth hours.” So that’s why, at 9:10pm on Saturday, March 27, 2010, I turned on one lamp with a CFL, sat on our second-hand couch, and enjoyed my library book.