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Countdown to Earth Hour 2008…

22 Mar , 2008 by

Do you remember last year when Sydney, Australia made the news by turning their lights out for one hour to show their concern about global warming? Besides being concerned about the effects, especially for my children and grandchildren, as an astronomer I support anything which helps reduce light pollution, even if it’s just for an hour. Beyond extinguishing the lights for 60 minutes at 8pm March 29, 2008, there are lots of things you can do to make Earth Hour 2008 an even greater success. Let’s take a look.

2.2 million people and 2100 Sydney businesses turned off their lights for one hour – Earth Hour – March 29, 2008. According to their information, the greenhouse reduction achieved in the Sydney CBD during Earth Hour was sustained for a year, it would be equivalent to taking 48,616 cars off the road for a year. This year many major global cities are joining Earth Hour in 2008, and they’re are turning a symbolic event into a global movement.

Start showing your support by visiting our own Universe Today Earth Hour page and signing up on the UT page. You’ll see your name appear as an Earth Hour / Universe Today participant! Tell a friend. Better still, tell all your friends, and your family, and your workmates. Just email them with a link to this website. We may or may not make an impact, but it won’t be because we didn’t try. You can also organize your own Earth Hour activities as well and you’ll find packets and information on how to involve your community at the Earth Hour Website.

If you think this is going to be big, then you’re right. Created to take a stand against the greatest threat our planet has ever faced, Earth Hour uses the simple action of turning off the lights for one hour to deliver a powerful message about the need for action on global warming. This simple act has captured the hearts and minds of people all over the world. As a result, at 8pm March 29, 2008 millions of people in the world’s major capitol cities like Aalborg, Aarhus, Adelaide, Atlanta, Bangkok, Brisbane, Canberra, Chicago, Christchurch, Copenhagen, Dublin, Manila, Melbourne, Montreal, Odense, Ottawa, Perth, Phoenix, San Francisco, Suva and Lautoka, Sydney, Tel Aviv, Toronto and Vancouver will be participating as well.

At last count, over 172,000 individuals and nearly 12,000 businesses/organizations have agreed to support Earth Hour. Just who in the astronomy world would do that? In the United States alone you’ll find such great organizations Adler Planetarium, Arizona Science Center, Oceanside Photo and Telescope, StarPals, and The Chicago Astronomer just to name a few. You’d be amazed at the number of schools, universities, restaurants, motels, airlines and others that will be participating.

Sign up now… And let the Universe Today voice be heard!


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Bill
Guest
Bill
March 22, 2008 3:05 PM
It amazes me how so many, so called educated people, become fools in believing that we anthill sized lifeforms can cause any global warming! They remind me of the fools on the building top waiving at the giant spaceship in “Independence Day”. The majority of the reputable scientists dismiss the “Gore Lie” as just what it really is. A lie with designs to make money off the ignorant. Get over it. The Earth has existed through more global warming and global freezing episodes than most fools out there can count. All the solar planets are warming at the same rate. The Sun is emitting more radiation than we humans have ever measured in our short little lives. It… Read more »
Eduardo Mariño
Guest
Eduardo Mariño
March 22, 2008 4:21 PM

Bill, es significativamente evidente que perteneces y representas al 5% del la población del planeta que cree ciegamente en el beneficio que hace USA en Irak, la eficiencia de la FED o la total remisión del alcoholismo de cierto lider. El mismo 5% de los habitantes del planeta que se cree dueño de los destinos y recursos del otro 95%. Ese 5% que Michael Moore ha definido, con bastante más acierto que yo, stupid white men.

meeeeeee
Guest
meeeeeee
March 22, 2008 4:24 PM

that is not true for canada cuz otherwise i ll hav to go out in 1-2 hour to take notes….
for what counrty is this skywatch?

jim shoenfelt
Guest
jim shoenfelt
March 22, 2008 4:37 PM

Man made global warming is a hoax. Co2 is a result of global warming not a cause. The greatest “green house gas” is water vapor! When global temperature increases, water vapor increases.

Tammy Plotner
Guest
Tammy Plotner
March 22, 2008 5:19 PM
Global warming or global ice age? It is my opinion that science has not studied the situation long enough to give us accurate facts. I have no faith in politics – only in humankind. I do not believe everything I read in the news – and only a part of what I observe. However, if there is even a tiny chance that something as easy as turning off my lights for one hour can cause a change – even a small one. Then it is the least I can do. I have respect for humankind all around the world. If one of my brothers or sisters asks for such a small thing as turning off my lights for… Read more »
Mus
Guest
Mus
March 22, 2008 6:51 PM
Bill- the overwhelming majority of scientists (reputable AND not) accept the fact that anthropogenic global warming is happening. The only people who deny this are fringe scientists (usually not even climatologists), bloggers, and conservative radio talk show hosts. As for “all” other solar planets warming up- That is complete and utter nonsense. Take a look at this: http://tinyurl.com/2yjcqg Jim- It’s been well established CO2 is the cause. About water… water vapor is a trailing gas, not a forcing gas. As you yourself said, “When global temperature increases, water vapor increases.”… The amount of water vapor in the atmosphere depends on the temperature. The amount of CO2 gas doesn’t. Hence CO2 being a forcing gas (causes global warming) and… Read more »
autumn
Guest
autumn
March 23, 2008 12:52 AM
Let’s be fair. Antropocentric Global Warming is the current scientific concensus. The vast (yes, vast) majority of scientists working in the relevant fields feel that the actions of man are doing something really severe to the environment. There are many scientists who disagree, and their disagreements, even though a minority opinion, are worthy of inspection. Let’s not cheapen the debate by claiming on either side things which are not true. I happen to think that the preponderance of evidence is suggestive of AGW, but I do not pretend that alternative explanations are dismissable. On the other hand, claiming that AGW is being disputed by a significant percentage of investigators is also silly. There is a general scientific consensus.… Read more »
Jim
Guest
Jim
March 23, 2008 1:15 AM

I can’t believe that on a website as prestigious as this people are still arguing about the causes of climate change.

‘Isn’t that an iceberg we are appoaching?’
‘Naw, we know there are no icebergs in this area, so it can’t be. Forget about it.’
Crunch!

Rich Faulkner
Guest
Rich Faulkner
March 23, 2008 4:09 AM

For those who would say “no” to Global Warming, I ask:

What harm would it do to turn off the lights for one hour (or more, for that matter)?

Conserving Earth’s resources is just another part of being good stewards of this old planet.

Must humankind leave its trash everywhere we go? The human footprint on this earth is obvious. Whether we are the sole cause of this mess, is certainly up for debate. But why not work to improve the situation.

Will our efforts be enough? Who knows! But we can’t know until we start doing something about it. This one hour event is one small first step in that direction.

Andrew James
Member
March 23, 2008 8:15 AM

Aussie! Aussie! Aussie!
Oi! Oi! Oi!

Australia was the first to do it, and it is wonderful that the other countries are now adopting it for themselves!

Perhaps us amateur astronomers should be going outside to
observe the sky during the hour in question, and that we save on
power when the all the lights are turned out for dark adaption.

TerryTL
Guest
TerryTL
March 23, 2008 8:50 AM

Think about Global Warming like this, if you have a swimming pool and someone takes a leakt, the volume of water will dissipate the effect. The same with the earth. Only problem is if everyone in the pool decides to leak the pool suddenly becomes gross. The earth can absorb massive quantities of waste and we love to do it al at once but there is evidence that we are making this place gross. It is prudent on our part to accept our role (responsibility?) and try to leak at sustainable rates.

Molly
Guest
Molly
March 23, 2008 10:51 AM

Global Warming or not,,, I think it would be fun just to see if the whole world could come together and do just one thing in common. Who knows, something else could start,,, such as global peace???

I say let’s go for it…

David R.
Member
David R.
March 23, 2008 2:13 PM

Turning out the lights isn’t a radical idea. Just do it for a little while and shut up.

Polaris93
Member
March 23, 2008 11:11 PM

Bill — a) Prove your assertions, using solid evidence and plausible scientific models. b) Adapt how? Become little purple marine bacteria that thrive during extreme global warming episodes, such as that which closed out the Permian? c) Die off like the dinosaurs? Do you mean we should pull down a 10-mile wide comet to do unto us as a similar one did to the dinosaurs? Or commit collective suicide? You think anyone’s going to take that seriously? d) See (a), above.

Rastloser
Guest
Rastloser
March 23, 2008 5:10 PM
To those who don’t believe in the reality of global warming: I don’t understand how you so often connect “I don’t believe global warming is a real effect” with “we don’t have to conserve energy”. Those two statements are not really connected closely. Energy generation with the methods we use today impacts the environment in lots of not-at-all-subtle ways: Strip mining for coal or oil sand creates large wastelands that need to be recultivated with quite a lot of effort. Mining for uranium or driling for oil and gas means there’s a risk that dangerous substances are released into the atmosphere or into drinking water. Plus, all these resources are finite. With oil and coal being such interesting… Read more »
Polaris93
Member
March 24, 2008 1:13 AM
In all the hoo-hah over the question of whether global warming is “real” or not, very few people seem to realize that there are two questions here, not one, and they are not identical: 1) Is global warming occurring? 2) If global warming is occurring, what can be done about it? These are *not* the same question. Evidence seems to point strongly in the direction of a “yes” answer to the first question. But that doesn’t mean that the proper response to global warming is to jump on the nearest bandwagon and become part of a movement out to ban technology and set an elite few to control everyone else on the planet “for their own good.” The… Read more »
Astrofiend
Member
Astrofiend
March 23, 2008 11:11 PM
To all of the ‘intuitive scientists’ (…it can’t be true – I’ve thought about it REALLY hard!) out there who come out of the woodwork to comment on any of the global warming articles on UT – I hope you’re correct and that the 99.9% of researching climatologists are wrong and the mountains of evidence have been mis-interpreted. We’ll see in the next 30 years. But if they’re not wrong, I’m going to get my kid to punch your kid in the nads for having such thoughtless bastards as parents. On to the event though – being a Sydney-sider myself, I can attest to the fact that it was quite spectacular and a little eerie being in a… Read more »
Aikipy
Guest
Aikipy
March 24, 2008 12:10 AM

I think TerryTL is right, but most people don’t really think about it and those who do just believe that it’s only them who do those things! That’s the bad part: most of us don’t think that, if every people on this planet would do the same, there would be a significant difference. In better or in worse, depending on the action we do. So, you may not think that turning off the lights for one hour will make any difference, but trust me, it will! And if every single person would think as you do, there wouldn’t even exist an Earth Hour, would it?

Brian Sheen
Member
March 24, 2008 1:53 AM

Just a tad worrying this Global Warming business.
Those of us who have lived for a long time will realise that it is now noticably warmer than years ago. The natural causes of climate change include the effect of precession but that operates on a 26,000 year cycle, not a lifetime cycle. To get a good understanding of the problem then read “Global Warming understanding the forecast “by David Archer and published by Blackwell Publishing in 2007, it deals with the water vapour problem too. A bit technical but it is worth the effort.

As I live on naturally reclaimed land at sea level you can bet I am supporting projects like Tammy’s.

Shannon
Guest
Shannon
March 24, 2008 5:07 AM

Wow. I knew that all groups of people have their members who know they are the only ones “right” about everything. I also knew that all groups have their share of naysayers and bullies.

This is a simple, symbolic event to try and get people working together about something. Why do you have to put it down and call people names. Aren’t you out of elementary school yet? Aren’t you an adult with more important things to do?

I can only be hopeful that my own young children, who are more kind and open-minded than some of the adults on here, will not become small-minded cowards who sit behind a keyboard, putting others down for their beliefs.

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