The first Earth Hour event I hosted was 5 years ago. At the time, I didn’t think too much of it. I merely thought of it as a pretty cool concept. Switching off the lights, chilling on a rooftop, accompanied by songs and performances til the lights came back on an hour later. I mean, how much can one hour of darkness do for Earth anyways?
Growing up, I’ve always been made aware about the importance of recycling, conserving energy and water. However, it was not until recent years when social media became such a big part of our lives and movies like 2012, The Day After Tomorrow, Mad Max, Allegiant and many more kept highlighting the planet’s condition and gave us a glimpse into what could possibly be the future of our planet if we don’t do anything about it now that I started taking it more seriously. Try not to judge me that it took a bunch of actors to spark these thoughts.
This year on 19th March as I hosted my second Earth Hour event and turned off the lights at 8.30pm for an hour, I realised that this symbolic gesture is crucial as it served as a reminder for us to reflect on what we can do to protect the planet. I started reading more about the state of Earth and was pretty overwhelmed by the information gathered; how 2015 has the record of being the warmest year in over a hundred years, the spike in C02 concentration in the atmosphere, the amount of waste and plastic dumped into the ocean each year and the amount of forest we lose each year as well.
We cannot go on being ignorant about this. Sure, we may not feel the repercussions now. The air is still good enough to breathe, we still see greeneries, we still have clean water but if we go on stripping the planet of its resources and continue to take it for granted, the same cannot be said in time to come.
I’m no expert when it comes to saving the planet but I know that we can make a difference even if it’s just a bit, by being more conscious about what we do on a daily basis. This is our home. If we’re not going to protect it, who else will?
photos via Jon Teo