Pretoria – South Africans were on Monday
urged to showcase their commitment to combat climate change by supporting this year’s Earth Hour initiative taking place in two weeks time.
This year’s event, happening between 20:30 to 21:30 on March 26, was seen as a new phase for the movement as it now sought to urge people to make a difference even beyond the hour, the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) said.
In 2010 hundreds of millions of people across the world took part in Earth Hour by switching off their lights for an hour, making it the largest mass participation environmental event in the world.
Organisers said this was only the beginning. This year Earth Hour was asking people to commit to an action, big or small, that they would sustain for the future of our planet.
“The challenges that face our planet are immense, but never underestimate the possibility for change when we face these challenges with true common purpose. Hundreds of millions of people around the globe have given us a glimpse of what is possible,” said WWF director general, Jim Leape.
“It is now time to go beyond the hour and show what can be done – by the people for the planet,” he said.
He said an online platform that captured and allowed individuals, organisations, businesses and governments to share their actions, would act as the tool to showcase and inspire commitments to protect the planet.
People can sign up, share their actions and learn more at www.earthhour.org.za
This year was especially important for South Africans as the country would host the climate change conference in Durban later this year. This annual conference was where world leaders met to assess progress in dealing with climate change and negotiate obligations for reducing greenhouse gas emissions, said Leape.