Lights going out Sa­tur­day du­ring sixth an­nual Earth Hour

L'Etoile - - IN OTHER WORDS -

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.

Not­ma­ny­towns

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.

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