Earth hour two months away

28 January 2009 | News story

On Saturday, 28 March, at 8.30pm local time more than 1,000 cities across the world will turn off their lights for one hour – Earth Hour --sending a powerful message to decision makers that we want an international agreement to reduce global warming by the next UN climate meeting in Copenhagen in December 2009.

"We all need to join this global environmental action to voice our collective concern about climate change and to show world leaders we are serious about securing a Global Deal on climate in less than 11 months time," said Julia Marton-Lefèvre, Director-General of the International Union for Conservation of Nature.

Earth Hour 2009 aims to reach one billion people in more than 1,000 cities, including businesses, governments and communities.The campaign is expected to produce the largest-ever groundswell of public support.  

"Taking the first step is as easy as turning off a light. Encouraging others – entire cities, multinational corporations and people around the world – to perform this simple act for just one hour, makes it possible for everyone to participate, " said Julia Marton-Lefèvre. "This is why IUCN is supporting Earth Hour, and is asking all of our members to join us in this important action."

Earth Hour is a broad global coalition campaign led by WWF, and IUCN coordinates closely with the 30 WWF country offices involved, all  members of the Union. Two years ago, Earth Hour began in one city, in one country, when more than 2.2 million households and businesses in Sydney turned off their lights for one hour. Last year, Earth Hour reached 370 cities and towns in more than 35 countries across 18 time zones, and the campaign shifted from a Sydney event to a global sustainability movement.

Earth Hour 2009 will be even bigger because the threats posed by unchecked climate change are escalating, along with people’s concern. "We need every individual, government and business to play a part. Earth Hour provides a constructive platform for engaging these stakeholders and demonstrates the impact we can have when we act together, " urged IUCN's Director General.

For more information, visit www.earthhour.org and help world leaders see the light on climate by taking action on 28 March.