GREEN TIP: On Saturday, March 27th 2010 at 8:30 p.m. local time join hundreds of millions of people around the world and turn off your lights for one hour, symbolically calling for action on climate change.
Earth Hour is World Wildlife Fund’s global initiative where individuals, schools, organizations, businesses and governments turn off their lights for one hour to cast a vote in favor of action on climate change. By voting with their light switches, Earth Hour participants send a powerful, visual message demanding action on climate change.
Earth Hour is the largest climate event in history. In 2009, more than 4,000 cities in 87 countries went dark. Here in the United States, and estimated 80 million Americans participated, along with 318 cities and 8 US states.
Participants in this movement are encouraged invite friends and family to take action, and incorporate ideas and solutions for combating climate change into their daily lives. Go to http://www.earthhour.org/ and sign up.
Impacts of Climate Change
- Because of climate change, the loss of Arctic sea ice is destroying the habitats of polar bears and walruses, threatening their survival.
- Because of climate change, in the Caribbean, warmer temperatures are skewing gender ratios of sea turtles, undermining the stability of the species.
- Because of climate change winter sports such as skiing, snowboarding and snowshoeing could become a thing of the past in many areas of the US.
- From trout fishing in Montana to waterfowl hunting in Arkansas, many recreational activities enjoyed by Americans are at risk from climate change.
- Most of us will experience climate change in the form of extreme weather: floods, droughts, heat waves and stronger storms and hurricanes.
- Globally, climate change is causing glacial melt, sea level rise, loss of Arctic sea ice, increased insect infestation, wider spread of diseases and extreme weather events.
Understanding your carbon footprint
- Most greenhouse gases are caused by the burning of fossil fuels for electricity generation and transportation.
- Deforestation is another major driver of climate change, responsible for more carbon pollution than the entire global transportation sector.
- A carbon footprint is a measure of the impact human activities have on the environment in terms of the amount of carbon pollution produced.
- Simple ways to reduce your carbon footprint include: walk more, use public transportation, only buy what you need and recycle.
Tips to living green
- Purchase energy efficient appliances. They cut carbon pollution and save you money!
- Make sure your dishwasher and washing machine are always full before you run them as this will save energy and money
- Weather-proofing your home is a great way to save energy. Caulk your doors and windows, add insulation or add shades to use in the summer!
- Leaving your computer for awhile? Put it on stand-by and it will take less energy than shutting down and restarting.
- Fix leaking faucets. The constant drip wastes water, energy and money, so repair them as soon as possible.
- Eat more veggies! On average, it takes nearly 10 times as much fossil fuel to produce animal protein compared to plant protein.
- Unplug appliances and phone charges when they aren’t in use. If they’re plugged in, they’re drawing energy and costing you money.
Source: Earth Hour 2010
Read what Mrs. Green has to say about Earth Hour at Little Green Blog: The Biggest Climate Awareness Campaign Ever
My Green Side’s weekly web pick:
On Earth Hour hundreds of millions of people, organizations, corporations and governments around the world will come together to make a bold statement about their concern for climate change by doing something quite simple — turning off their lights for one hour. In the U.S. where we are already feeling the impacts of climate change, Earth Hour sends a clear message that Americans care about this issue and want to turn the lights out on dirty air, dangerous dependency on foreign oil and costly climate change impacts, and make the switch to cleaner air, a strong economic future and a more secure nation.
Participation is easy. By flipping off your lights on March 27th at 8:30 p.m. local time you will be making the switch to a cleaner, more secure nation and prosperous America.
Editor’s Note: Each Wednesday My Green Side brings Simple Tips for Green Living to The Christopher Gabriel Program. We also highlight a favorite green site each week. You can stream the segment at approximately 1020am (CDT) every Wednesday at WDAY.com.