Editorial: Power down tonight during Earth Hour

From 8:30 to 9:30 p.m. on Saturday, March 30, people are encouraged to observe Earth Hour

This Saturday the community is invited to go dark.

From 8:30 to 9:30 p.m. on Saturday, March 30, the planet is encouraged to observe Earth Hour, an opportunity to cut down electrical consumption in homes and businesses.

Earth Hour is an annual global event co-ordinated by the World Wildlife Fund Canada. People around the planet are encouraged to turn off unnecessary lights and electronics for one hour. It started as a one-city initiative in Sydney, Australia in 2007 and now means lights out for anyone, in any city, who choose to participate.

Judging from the results in recent years, there’s been a trend of declining participation. On Vancouver Island, power usage actually increased by 0.6 per cent, according to B.C. Hydro. Earth Hour 2018 was the first time in a decade that electricity usage increased during that hour, hydro said.

Hydro is a renewable energy source, but one that comes with environmental impacts, and so it’s worth thinking about where our power comes from. An awareness exercise like Earth Hour seems like the right time to try to do that. Not to mention that if we can think about ways to cut our electricity use this Saturday, it can help all the other kilowatt hours that add up to high utility bills.

The City of Nanaimo will take part with its usual Earth Hour Glow in the Dark Skate on Saturday from 7-9 p.m. at the Nanaimo Ice Centre.

Whether at the rink or at home by candlelight, during Earth Hour or any other hour, there are probably opportunities to power down sometimes.

-files from Black Press

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