Media hysteria over "Earth Hour"

Switch 'em back on

Not a single mainstream media outlet has called out “Earth Hour” for the pointless gesture it really is – celebrating darkness and backwardness and abhorring human progress and achievement. The Australian and the ABC are wisely not touching it. Here are a few examples.

From the Herald Sun:

Australia powers down for Earth Hour

FROM the nation’s red heart to the tip of Tassie, Australians will flick a small switch on Saturday to make a big statement.

“Earth Hour is an opportunity for people around the world to speak in one voice on the issue of climate change,” said Greg Bourne, CEO of Australia’s World Wildlife Fund (WWF).

Australia will be among the first places in the world to turn the power down, with some of the nation’s biggest companies and organisations committed to turning off their lights for 60 minutes from 8.30pm on Saturday. [When nobody’s at work anyway. I’d like to see them do it at 11 am on a Monday morning – Ed]

Ferries will blast their horns in Sydney – where the first ever Earth Hour was staged by WWF in 2007 – to signal the start of the event, which will see the lights go out at the Sydney Opera House, Sydney Tower, Harbour Bridge and Luna Park. (source)

From the Sydney Moonbat Herald (Fairfax is a sponsor of Earth Hour, because that’s the kind of organisation Fairfax is):

Millions to go dark for Earth Hour

World-famous landmarks including the Pyramids, the Eiffel Tower and Beijing’s Forbidden City will go dark on Saturday as millions turn out the lights for Earth Hour, a rolling grassroots movement aimed at tackling climate change.

Now in its fourth year, the campaign promises to be the biggest yet with thousands of cities and towns in 125 countries – 37 more than last year – pledging to take part in the aftermath of a failed climate summit last year.

December’s fractious Copenhagen summit has done nothing to dampen public hopes for meaningful action to avert catastrophic global warming, according to Earth Hour founder Andy Ridley.

“There appears to be some fatigue to the politics around it… But people are far more motivated this year than they were last year,” he told AFP.

Now run by the WWF [extreme green environmental advocacy and pressure group, which wrote half of the IPCC’s AR4 report – Ed], Earth Hour began in Sydney in 2007 when 2.2 million people switched off the lights in their homes, offices and businesses for 60 minutes to make a point about electricity consumption and carbon pollution.

The campaign went global the following year, and this Saturday, more than 1,200 of the world’s best-known landmarks will kill their lights at 8:30pm local time in what organisers describe as a “24-hour wave of hope and action”. (source)

Pass the sick bag. And of course, because Fairfax is a sponsor, all the Fairfax local papers are plugging it for all they are worth. Here’s the Armidale Express:

City lights dim as Earth Hour nears

Armidale Dumaresq Council will join with more than one billion people in 4000 cities around the world and switch off non-essential lights and electricity uses during the fourth annual Earth Hour, tomorrow night.

In 2009, with business involvement, Earth Hour became the world’s biggest mass participation event. This year’s Earth Hour, which starts at 8.30, hopes to eclipse that success.

“Earth Hour is an Australian initiative of WWF Australia that began in Sydney in 2007,” Armidale Dumaresq mayor Peter Ducat said. (source)

The Southern Highlands News:

Lights out for Earth Hour in the Southern Highlands

SOUTHERN Highlands residents, schools and businesses will be switching off the lights and turning on to Earth Hour 2010 tomorrow night.

From 8.30pm to 9.30pm on Saturday, Peppers Manor House and Craigieburn will join the global campaign and plunge into darkness to strengthen public awareness for climate change.

The energy-conscious retreats will demonstrate their commitment to environmental responsibility through a series of interior and exterior energy saving initiatives such as extinguishing feature lighting, holding a candlelit reception, turning off appliances in unoccupied rooms and neutralising air conditioning by a few degrees to consume less power.

Guests are encouraged to join in by turning room lights out, and they will be given glow sticks at check-in. (source)

Sounds romantic. The Yass Tribune:

Go to the light in Yass, after flicking the switch

People in Bangladesh are doing it; people in London are doing it; and people in the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands are doing it. Many, like Australia, have done it before, while others are first-timers. What could possibly unite such a disparate group of people from all over the world? Concern for climate change, of course. They have all signed on to participate in Earth Hour this Saturday.

Momentum for the global initiative is gaining speed in the Yass Valley. Residents are starting to reach for the candles and embrace the concept of Earth Hour, now in its fourth year. In 2009, families and individuals from across the region flicked the switch for an hour. This year, the Earth Hour message goes beyond the gesture of turning out the lights.

The wildlife preservation group WWF [wildlife preservation group? Sorry, you’ve got it completely wrong there – Ed] which created the event in Sydney in 2007, is encouraging people to also change their daily habits (see page 2 of today’s edition for tips on how you can reduce the size of your footprint!). (source)

Enough. Don’t sit in the dark with the hippies. Forget Earth Hour, celebrate Human Achievement Hour.

UPDATE: The ABC is covering it, but amazingly is half critical in an environmental blog post, and even mentions HAH – see here:

The subtleties of the Earth Hour message – that it’s not about saving electricity, it’s about the symbolism – have been well and truly lost.

If you need evidence, look to the group that has started in opposition to Earth Hour. “Human Achievement Hour” is an invention of US think tank, the Competitive Enterprise Institute. It encourages participants to celebrate this hour, which coincides with Earth Hour, by turning on all their lights and using as much electricity as possible to celebrate the fact that they can.

“We salute the people who keep the lights on and produce the energy that helps make human achievement possible,” Myron Ebell, CEI’s Director of Energy and Global Warming Policy is quoted as saying.

CEI Senior Fellow Eli Lehrer says, “Those who wish to celebrate Earth Hour should sit in the dark, turn off the heat, and breathe as little as possible.”

Sitting in the dark is not sustainable for more than a symbolic hour. And if anyone is going to understand the concept of sustainability it ought to be the green groups.

The fact that the chief of the WWF himself is mixed in his messages is proof that the Earth Hour message is well and truly scrambled. A global audience of over 50 million people have been led to believe they have to sit in the dark to be green.

Comments

  1. Think of it as “Solidarity with North Korea” hour:
    http://strangemaps.wordpress.com/2007/12/16/218-koreas-dark-half/
    This seems to be what people think they want.

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