I ask you to join me in recognizing Earth Hour later this month.
On Saturday, March 31st at 8:30 p.m., hundreds of millions of people around the globe will turn off their non-essential lights for one hour during Earth Hour – an innovative campaign that raises awareness on sustainability and the environmental challenges we all face. Earth Hour is about raising consciousness, capturing people's imaginations and empowering them to make a difference. The City of Sydney was the first to switch off in 2007. In 2008, Earth Hour went global and 50 million people around the world took part. Last year, Earth Hour reached 1.8 billion people from over 5,000 cities and towns in 135 countries and territories across every continent. With businesses, governments and communities working together, this single act is uniting people across the world by provoking discussion and a commitment to long-term actions that will benefit the planet. Let us include the City of Madison in that effort in 2012.
While it is understandable that the City will not be able to turn off streetlights on State Street on a Saturday evening, most of the outside lighting at Monona Terrace, the first LEED EB silver-certified Convention Center in the country, will again be off for the hour. I urge other residents to take the challenge as well. As you do, please consider the extra effort we can all make to curb carbon pollution and lower our dependence on fossil fuels.