Earth Hour: UAE residents to switch off lights this Saturday

Pavilions at Expo 2020 Dubai will be turning off lights in sync to mark the occasion

By SM Ayaz Zakir

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Published: Fri 25 Mar 2022, 9:51 PM

UAE residents are set to switch off lights from 8.30pm to 930pm today as they join the globe in marking Earth Hour.

Earth Hour, which is celebrated each year on the last Saturday of March, is aimed to encourage individuals, communities, and businesses to turn off all non-essential lights and utilities for an hour symbolising their commitment to planet Earth.

Anjum Hassan, HOD at Delhi Private School, Sharjah, said: “Earth hour 2022 is going to be different and a much-awaited one as we celebrate it after the pandemic,”

Hassan said she will be going to Expo 2020 Dubai with her family to join the Earth Hour parade where each pavilion will switch off their lights in sync, suddenly plunging different areas of the mega fair into darkness - albeit for a fleeting moment.

“But this darkness leaves one with a sense of responsibility, a feeling of duty, a concern towards Mother Earth,” said Anjum, noting that there could not have been a better place to mark Earth Hour given the prime message of Sustainability pushed forward by Expo 2020.

Abu Dhabi resident, Zoya Chappra, who participates in Earth hour every year, said: “Turning out the lights — even if it’s for just 60 minutes — is significant because in this way, we are raising awareness about reducing carbon emission and habitat destruction on a global scale.”

She said climate change is a global concern, and such small steps can have noticeable impact in the long run. “I believe in taking responsibility for my own contribution and individual actions. This is what I would like to teach the next generation too,” Zoya told Khaleej Times.

Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (Dewa) has called on residents to participate in Earth Hour 2022 in a big way. The utility major is marking Earth Hour under the theme ‘Shaping our Future,’ and is turning off all non-essential lights and electrical equipment from 8:30pm to 9:30pm today.

Dewa has also urged public and private organisations to turn off unnecessary lights during Earth Hour to show solidarity with the efforts to protect the environment and the need to take proactive steps to limit the effects of global warming and climate change.

Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, MD & CEO of Dewa, said Dewa plays a pioneering role in supporting national and global efforts in environmental sustainability. “Dubai was the first Arab city to participate in Earth Hour, reflecting the Emirate’s keenness to raise awareness of the danger of carbon dioxide emissions to limit consumption levels and waste of resources,” said Al Tayer.

“From its launch in 2008 till 2021, Earth Hour-Dubai has achieved cumulative savings up to 3.12 GWh of electricity and helped reduce 1,607 tonnes of carbon emissions,” Al Tayer revealed.

Maathangi Anirudh, who is pursuing B-Tech from IIT Delhi, said: “Earth Hour is a global initiative to raise awareness about the heavy, unhealthy consumption of fossil fuels. Earth Hour should be marked more often, not just on the last Saturday of March.

“People must follow a minimalist lifestyle, which would reduce our consumption footprint and leave a positive impact on the environment,”

Residents can use the hashtags #EarthHourDubai, #EarthHourUAE, and #Connect2Earth in their posts on social media to express solidarity with planet Earth and their commitment to protecting the environment.

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