Originally intended to document my experience of DeLorean ownership, focus is often radical and strange, boring and obtuse.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Earth Hour, Ontario

If the military ran Earth Hour we'd all be doing push-ups for leaving lights on after lights-out.

Tonight our city joined hundreds of others across the world in the fight for cleaner air with Earth Hour. During Earth Hour, living people are encouraged to turn off all their lights and unplug non-essential equipment that uses electricity while ghosts may continue emitting ominous light.

News of Earth Hour, which started in Australia in 2007, spread quickly and it has now become an international affair. Our city both promoted the event and joined in, promising to shut off lights, computers, and coffee makers in city hall.

My workplace
shut off everything but the emergency lighting systems, and when 8 p.m. rolled around, street lights were about the only light source visible from atop the mountain.

Idea, indeed.Suz and I shut off everything and unplugged the microwave and clock radio around 7 p.m., one hour earlier than Earth Hour. We then drove our environmentally friendly car up the mountain and sat at the top of the stairs to take photos along with quite a few other curious denizens.

There we sat shivering in the cold with our hot chocolates until 9:15 p.m. while people joined us at the cliff's edge to watch the burglars sneak around in the pitch dark neighbourhood beneath us.

Two people arrived with smiling dogs. Dogs who were happy to be patted by strangers. Dogs who had no idea what was being accomplished. Dogs who will never realize how much energy Ontario saved during Earth Hour. According to this nifty graph I found at www.ieso.ca, we saved approximately 500 megawatts.

One big surprise was the church which was lit up brighter than a Christmas tree, announcing its exemption from the event. Their brightly illuminated steeple stood out like a sore thumb against the blackened skyline.

On our way home Suz and I completed the evening by renting No Country For Old Men, a movie that's filming was entirely "carbon offset."

It was a fun night, although it's a little discouraging to know that no matter how hard we try to be environmentally friendly by participating in events like Earth Hour, homeless people will always be one step ahead.

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8 Comments:

Blogger SJ said...

We call it a power cut here.

Strange thing that church joining in. I guess they aren't keen on giving up power.

2:03:00 AM

 
Blogger mmat said...

it was disappointing for me to look around my neighbourhood and see lights in the windows and the flicker of television sets. one hour is not exactly a big deal to the average person - i'm sure they could have done without their hour of CSI:Miami for one night.

i spent the evening knitting by candle light, doing my best to be like a pioneer.

12:03:00 PM

 
Blogger Katie said...

I know a lot of people in my neighborhood participated.

2:39:00 PM

 
Blogger Ms. Creek said...

We did that too, but it wasn't on the day you did, it was like in NOvember, or something and in the evening...

Why are the images deleted on your blog post?

11:16:00 PM

 
Blogger Patti said...

I think this was a neat idea but heard nothing about in my redneck deep south neck of the woods! I bet some views were really neat in the bigger cities.

9:16:00 AM

 
Blogger Martini said...

Most, if not all of the street lights were left on for safety puposes, which made the view not-so-spectacular, but entire neighbourhoods were dark for about 2 hours (see bottom left of my main photo). Even the entire chain of McDonald's joined in and went dark.

I am not sure why my pics disappeared, but they are fixed now.

10:55:00 AM

 
Blogger Michael Manning said...

Martini: I'll never understand why we haven't harnessed sun power!

2:29:00 PM

 
Blogger Martini said...

Michael, California sure can, but up here in igloo-country, it's tough. Too expensive for how much sun we get, but I'm still keen on it.

10:00:00 PM

 

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