Earth Hour

Oh please. I keep seeing skeptics talk about what a stupid idea the Earth Hour is. Or how people keep proclaiming their views on Earth Hour on their facebook accounts. I happen to think that the Earth Hour is great, but I accept that Earth Hour has it’s flaws too, but overall it is a good step in my opinion.

Why do i think it is a good step, and that it is great? Have you realized the great hype that goes with every Earth Hour? The newspapers carry reminders, the television newscaster says it once, your friends talk to you about it. Blogs also blog about it, giving rise to people actually wondering what Earth Hour is about, and finding out more about it. In a way, you start to be more environmentally conscious. But whether you are so conscious that you actually do something about it is a different story altogether. Even people on Facebook, yes my friends, especially those with strong opinions, you actually help to broadcast the hype about Earth Hour.

Whilst it is a little stupid to only switch off your lights for an hour every year for this Earth Hour event, don’t you think it’s not about the amount saved, but the idea that transmit to every individual? Notice that governments around the world also participate, hence it is a very large scale world wide event. How many times can you organize a world wide event and not have something to criticise about?

But then, what flaws am I talking about? I am talking about the flaws in the user of Earth Hour, not the idea of the Earth hour itself. It’s us users that are plain stupid, switching off one hour of light that day and then waste electricity all year round. The GS did say that she once went back to NUS on a weekend, trying to use the PC cluster, only to find it locked, except the lights are on and the aircon is also at full blast. With no souls inside, that’s a huge waste of electricity.

Hence Earth Hour is actually not a bad idea. Earth hour is not to conserve the environment, but to raise awareness. Granted, more should be done to actually make us do something about saving the environment, but every large mission starts with baby steps. What we should do, on our part is to remember that the earth needs saving. It’s not only electricity though:

1)I do not accept plastic bags from shops unless I need them, so I do not use so many plastic bags that I do not need
2) I have entered the NUS toilet on two occasions, finding that the stupid tap is depressed too hard and the water keeps flowing as it does not go back to off state. Hence I pull the stupid button till it stops the flow, thus wasting less water. (Damn those stupid tap makers who do not know how to make good taps)
3) I sleep without aircon and without fan too. Don’t ask me how I did that. I think I got used to it. It’s an acquired feeling. :)
4) I print my stuff on both sides of the paper, and where possible, 2 per page instead of 1 per page.

But I think more can be done. Things like making it easier to recycle electronics, like used batteries and used printer ink cartridges. There is so much more we as citizens of the Earth can do for recycling efforts. The heat has been too darn hot recently isn’t it? I hope my children will not have to live in a desert. I rather they have more desserts.