You’ve seen all the videos and images we’ve been featuring lately that astronauts on the International Space Station have taken of Earth from orbit. The one ubiquitous feature is the amount of lights showing up from cities and towns around the world.
But will you be turning off the lights this weekend for Earth Hour 2012?
Earth Hour is a world-wide effort to raise awareness about the need to take action on climate change. This year, Earth Hour is on Saturday, March 31 and starts at 20:30 (8:30pm) wherever you are. People all over the world — and off the planet — will be turning off non-essential lights for an hour. Even the astronauts on the Space Station will be doing their part, as well as watching from above to see if they can there is a noticeable change in the amount of lights from Earth. Astronaut and nature ambassador André Kuipers will be taking photos and videos of Earth Hour from space.
What began as a single-city initiative in Sydney, Australia – in 2007, Earth Hour has grown into a global symbol of hope and movement for change. Earth Hour 2011 was the world’s largest ever voluntary action with people, businesses and governments in 135 countries across every continent joining in the symbolic environmental event.
Organizers say as many as 1.8 billion people will participate this year. Will you be one of them?
Nancy Atkinson is currently Universe Today’s Contributing Editor. Previously she served as UT’s Senior Editor and lead writer, and has worked with Astronomy Cast and 365 Days of Astronomy. Nancy is the author of the new book “Incredible Stories from Space: A Behind-the-Scenes Look at the Missions Changing Our View of the Cosmos.” She is also a NASA/JPL Solar System Ambassador.