Sunday April 1, 2012
Earth Hour: Lights out for a green cause
KUALA LUMPUR: Many parts of the country fell into darkness last night but it was all for a good cause.
Famous landmarks, including the Petronas Twin Towers, Seri Perdana in Putrajaya, the National Planetarium, Penang Bridge and other bridges as well as shopping complexes in the cities, dimmed their lights at 8.30pm to commemorate Earth Hour as thousands of Malaysians joined in the fight against climate change.
Among those who lent their support for Mother Earth by switching off non-essential lights were Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak and local celebrities.
Najib said the global event was an important celebration for energy conservation as climate change was a very serious problem affecting everyone.
“Observing Earth Hour is one of the many ways the Government is addressing climate change,” he tweeted.
Najib said steps were also being taken to find alternative energy, such as biomass and solar power, besides introducing the hybrid car programme.
“This is part of our plan to reduce carbon emissions by 40% by the year 2020,” he said.
Executive director Winston Lee, 29, who attended Earth Hour at Suria KLCC together with celebrities like Sazzy Falak, Cheryl Samad and Bernie Chan, said he made a pledge last year to turn off all non-essential lights in his house for an hour each week.
“I managed to fulfil it. It feels great to know that I am doing something to save our planet,” said Lee, who joined thousands in witnessing the lights being turned off at the Twin Towers.
German student Simon Bitzan, 20, said he was excited to see the Twin Towers “in a different light”.
“It is very exciting to witness something which happens only once a year.
“Everyone needs to play a part in saving Earth,” he said.
The celebration at Suria KLCC also saw eco-band KL Stomper entertaining the crowds with garbage bins, pots and pans being used as their musical instruments.
At the planetarium, the crowd took the opportunity of a night sky void of lights to admire the stars with telescopes.
Families also lit candles and lanterns as they took part in a night walk around the planetarium.
In Kota Kinabalu, Mayor Datuk Abidin Madingkir kicked off the celebration at Sutera Harbour Resort as lights along main roads, such as the long and scenic Likas Bay stretch, Coastal Highway and downtown spots, were extinguished.
The event also saw 480 candles being lit to display the sign “60+” to symbolise the need to go beyond Earth Hour to save the planet from the ravages of climate change.