World Earth Hour 2017 is Coming!

On March 25th, 2017, our little planet will celebrate World Earth Hour.  Started in Sydney, Australia in 2007 by the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) it is a movement started to show commitment to the planet.  Individuals, communities, households and businesses around the world are encouraged to be ‘lights off’ between the hour of 8:30 pm to 9:30 pm.  Since time zones are different worldwide, in outer space this would ideally look like a giant wave of a light show.  

Have some fun by candlelight.

Have some fun by candlelight.

While the event was not started to conserve energy, consumers and power plants clearly noticed a decrease in the usage of energy.  Phoenix, Arizona was one of 27 pilot cities to participate in World Earth Hour in 2008, and has celebrated every year since.  If you had any plans that involved leaving your darkened house for that hour, you may want to check and see if the place you are attempting to go is still open.  

However, before you leave for the evening adventure, or if you are staying in to participate in your own home, here’s a list of things to do to join in the movement to save the planet and be a little more green:  shut off the television, shut down your computers and switch off the power strips, turn off the lights, avoid using the garage door opener, turn off the air conditioning or heat for an hour, skip doing laundry or blow-drying your hair during that hour.

Or go to bed early.

Or go to bed early.

 Will that hour really make a difference?  You bet it will.  Pop on over to The Earth Hour website to read about the changes that hour made.  People worldwide didn’t just stop at electricity conservation, but waste management, water conservation and you can also have the nice, warm fuzzy feeling of making a small difference in the world.

 But if one hour without electronics has you wondering how to occupy yourself here are a few things to try:

1.    Spend quality time as a family sharing ghost stories, or family history.  Tell your kids about the good old days when you didn’t have Kindles, iPads or other electronic devices to entertain yourself.
2.    Take a flashlight and go for a walk.  You can find constellations, hunt for scorpions, or simply enjoy the fresh air.
3.    Play cards by candlelight*.  
4.    Dig out the dusty board games and play Monopoly or Candyland and refresh your brain on the simple joys of competition.
5.    Leave the lights off, doors locked, and go to bed early that night.  Chances are you are, like many other people in the world, slightly sleep deprived and those warm fuzzies of saving the planet, or just being plain old bored, can put you to sleep a bit earlier that night. Or just snuggle.

If you're afraid of the dark, hold someone else's hand.

If you're afraid of the dark, hold someone else's hand.

What ever way you decide to entertain yourself that hour, consider helping out the planet, saving resources and, quite frankly, learning how to lower your own electricity bill by celebrating Earth Hour this year.

*Please, use caution with candles as they are a high fire hazard.  Never leave candles unattended with children.

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