Lights going out Saturday during sixth annual Earth Hour
If all goes according to plan, many Vaudreuil-soulanges residents will be in the dark this Saturday from 8:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m., but most local towns will not. The annual call to extinguish the lights is for the 2012 Earth Hour initiative. The movement debuted in 2007 in Sydney, Australia. And while the event, organized by The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) aims to raise awareness about climate change, the call is not being headed by most local municipalities.
Earth Hour organizers say reducing such things as the use of electricity can have a positive effect on climate change.
Last year, more than 5,200 towns in 135 countries around the world switched their lights off during Earth Hour.
But the initiative may not be as popular in the region as it was in years past. Hudson, which used to lead the way via a grassroots environmental group, has not organized a municipal call to action this year. A town employee said Hudson used to leave that up to Go Green Hudson, a volunteer group of residents passionate about environmental issues and awareness. The group did not organize an Earth Hour event this year, said member Chantal Girard, because the group has been on hiatus since some of its volunteer members went back to work outside of the home.
Nevertheless, Girard encourages people to take up the challenge this Saturday: "Every little gesture by individuals adds up, especially when it's done globally," she said.
And a check of websites in VaudreuilDorion, Pincourt and Sainte-anne-deBellevue revealed the towns do not plan on participating in the event.
Meanwhile, the town of Saint-lazare did heed the call and is encouraging residents to do the same.
In addition, WWF Canada is offering incentives to the first 10,000 Canadians who register to join Team Canada. The site also has downloadable posters, suggestions for Earth Hour events, and activity pages for kids. To sign up for Team Canada, go to www.wwf.ca.
Earth Hour will take place from 8:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m on March 31.