Earth Hour Celebrations To Start At 5pm Today

March 23, 2013

This evening’s [Mar 23] Earth Hour event at City Hall will include a green living expo, environmental movies, information from environmental organizations and a glow in the dark fun run, Greenrock President Dr. Judith Landsberg said.

This is the 5th year that Greenrock has hosted the Earth Hour Celebration in Bermuda, and the 3rd year they have worked with their Earth Hour Council partners to hold the celebration on the steps of City Hall.

This partnership includes the City of Hamilton, BELCO, Department of Energy, Department of Sustainable Development and a number of individuals.

Dawn & The Rhythm Fire Drummers perform at last year’s Earth Hour:

The free event runs from 5pm to 10pm, while Earth Hour itself runs from 8:30 to 9:30 in the evening. The streetlights in Hamilton will be turned off and Greenrock encourage businesses to turn off their lights and those at home to turn their lights and non–essential appliances out and have a candle—lit dinner, play cards or board games.

Minister of Economic Development Dr. Grant Gibbons said, “Earth Hour aims to increase awareness and challenge individuals, corporations and, indeed, governments, to adopt energy efficiency and energy reduction initiatives.

“Support for Earth Hour is consistent with Government’s commitment to encourage energy efficiency and conservation.”

“Individuals and organizations that actively seek to save energy can reduce energy costs, promote economic security, and improve their bottom line,” said Dr Gibbons.

Dr. Judith Landsberg’s remarks:

Good morning Minister and members of the press.

It is with great pleasure that I am here today to introduce our Earth Hour activities. Positive news on climate change is rare: Global Climate disruption has brought us many stark images in the last year: Hurricane Sandy brought pictures of devastation in New York and New Jersey, we saw floods and land–‐slides in Brazil, fires in Australia, and drought across the United States.

Sometimes the situation we are in seems hopeless, how can we possibly cope with something on a planetary scale? This is the tough situation that we find ourselves in, but human beings are extraordinarily resourceful, particularly when we tackle something together. Earth Hour is about getting together – it is about the power of each person – you can stretch out your finger to turn out your lights and by doing that join hundreds of millions of people around the planet who believe that we can confront the problem
Of global climate change and that by acting together we can make a difference.

Climate change is a direct threat to Bermuda and to our way of life. We can reduce our energy use and our greenhouse gas emissions if we work together. The Department of Energy tabled the Energy White Paper nearly 2 years ago which outlines goals for us to meet as an island to combat global climate change:

  • Reduce our consumption of electricity by 30% by 2020
  • Increase our percentage of electricity from renewable to 30% by 2020
  • Reduce our greenhouse gas emissions from all sources, including transport, by more than 50%.

Other countries are well on their way to meeting similar targets. We ask the government to recommit to these goals, and we commit to support them. We can achieve them together!

Earth Hour is a global event that demonstrates a commitment to come together as a planet to meet these challenges. This is the 5th year that Greenrock has hosted the Earth Hour Celebration in Bermuda and the 3rd year that we have worked with our Earth Hour Council partners to hold the celebration on the steps of City Hall. This partnership: City of Hamilton, BELCO, Department of Energy, Department of Sustainable Development as well as a number of interested individuals, has organized a party to inspire change – change in the way we live today so that our children and grandchildren, and their grandchildren will have the choices we want them to have.

Our celebration on Saturday night at City Hall is first and foremost a community event. It is free to the public and we hope you will all come. It runs from 5pm to 10pm and we will also use the opportunity to give people practical solutions to more sustainable living. It includes

  • Green living expo
  • Environmental movies and discussion
  • Information from other environmental organizations
  • Businesses and homes participating by turning out their lights
  • A glow in the dark fun run
  • City Market

Earth Hour itself runs from 8:30 to 9:30 in the evening: The streetlights in Hamilton will be turned off and we encourage businesses to turn off their lights and show solidarity – register your participation at www.greenrock.org/earthhour. If you stay at home, then we encourage you to turn your lights out and non–‐essential appliances; have a candle—lit dinner, play cards or board games, think of ways you can reduce the power you use at home and at work.

Climate Change is a threat we all face and we want you to know that we are all working together.

The community has come together to support this, so We would like to thank Appleby’s who are the gold level Sponsors for the event, also our Silver level sponsors: the Waterfront, ACE, Zurich and Partner Re, and our Fun Run and Bronze Sponsors and patrons: Irie radio, BTC, Butterfield and Vallis, TOPS, OIL, Orbis, Endurance, Hiscox, Catlin, CellOne, Torus Re and the Earth Hour Council committee members: Thank you for your believe in our dream of conquering climate change.

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Remarks by Minister of Economic Development Dr Grant Gibbons:

Good Morning,

I am very pleased to tell you about Bermuda’s planned involvement in Earth Hour 2013 on Saturday, March 23rd and to invite participation from all sectors of the community.

Tomorrow, hundreds of millions of people in more than 135 countries across the globe will unite in a single moment to celebrate our planet by switching off their lights for one designated hour – Earth Hour.

Earth Hour aims to increase awareness and challenge individuals, corporations and, indeed, governments, to adopt energy efficiency and energy reduction initiatives.

To encourage and engage the public, a fun filled afternoon with activities and vendors will take place at City Hall heading up to the main Earth Hour event at 8:30 pm.

Support for Earth Hour is consistent with Government’s commitment to encourage energy efficiency and conservation.

Individuals and organizations that actively seek to save energy can reduce energy costs, promote economic security, and improve their bottom line.

By turning off all non-essential lighting controlled by the City of Hamilton, Dockyard and St. Georges during Earth Hour 2013, we are showing our commitment to basic everyday solutions for conserving energy.

Our wish, and indeed our challenge, is to increase the level of commitment to energy conservation and intelligent energy use within our community and to start focusing on simple changes that we can include in our everyday lives.

The Ministry of Economic Development and the Department of Energy are very pleased to partner in this global event which is led locally by Greenrock. Their leadership will allow Bermuda to celebrate Earth Hour on a national level.

So, on Saturday, March 23rd, please come out to City Hall for the afternoon and early evening.

And tomorrow, we invite all of Bermuda’s residents to participate in this global event by turning off all non-essential electric powered items for one hour starting at 8:30pm.

Thank you.

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