DUBAI, 19 March 2009: Dubai Holding has partnered with the WWF (World Wide Fund for Nature), for the second year running, to promote Earth Hour in Dubai. The global climate change initiative will see thousands of lights voluntarily turned off in the city for one hour, at 8:30pm on Saturday March 28, as part of the largest voluntary power down in history.
Dubai Holding along with other governmental and private bodies like the Dubai Water and Electricity Authority (DEWA), the Roads and Transport Authority, the Dubai International Financial Center and du, the UAE's integrated telecom service provider, have linked up to again lead the initiative, in Dubai.
Other organizations that have committed to support Earth Hour include the Federal Electricity and Water Authority (FEWA); Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry; Dubai Group Leo Burnett; the Omnicom Media Group; Standard Chartered Bank; Nakheel; TECOM Investments; EMAAR; Dubai Properties Group; Al Khaleej Centre; Jumeirah Group and Jumeirah Centre.
"We are asking everyone in Dubai to switch off all non-essential lights from 8.30pm to 9.30pm on March 28, to send a message around the world that we have the power to take action against global warming and that by working together we really can make a huge difference," said Khalid Al Shafar, Marketing Director, Dubai Holding.
Razan Khalifa Al Mubarak, Managing Director, EWS - WWF said, "Earth Hour is a powerful symbol of what can be achieved through individual action on a global scale, with the whole world coming together in a response to tackle climate change. In the UAE we are keen to grasp the momentum generated by this global occasion, urging everyone to make the switch for one symbolic hour, thus taking affirmative action towards helping save our planet."
"If Earth hour is seen as the global community responding to climate change, residents of the UAE can pledge to make an ongoing lasting difference by joining the Heroes of the UAE campaign at heroesoftheuae.ae. To create a sustainable environment for future generations' people need to show they care every day by taking simple action, and following the campaigns energy saving tips. As a vital first step let's join together as part of a global community to show our support for Earth Hour," Al Mubarak added.
The Walk, part of Dubai Properties' Jumeirah Beach Residence development, will be the focal point for this year's official Earth Hour activities in Dubai. Other activities will include switching off the exterior lighting at a number of Dubai landmarks, including the Burj Al Arab, Madinat Jumeirah, Emirates Towers, DIFC, and the offices of Dubai Holding and its entities, DEWA and du.
Last year, when Dubai became the first Arab city to participate in Earth Hour, electricity consumption in the city was reduced by more than 100,000kwH during the one hour power down.
Earth Hour, which began in Sydney, Australia in 2007, is now a worldwide environmental movement that will see up to one billion people turn off non-essential lighting and other electrical appliances. It will roll through 25 time zones, starting on New Zealand's Chatham Islands and ending in the Pacific Time Zone.
Billed, by the WWF, as the largest mass participation effort ever, Earth Hour will embrace more than 1,500 cities in over 80 countries. In addition to Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Sharjah and Fujeirah, in the UAE, lights will be switched off or dimmed in all the world's major cities, including Sydney, Beijing, Hong Kong, Manila, Singapore, Mumbai, Delhi, Cape Town, Athens, Paris, Berlin, London, New York, Toronto, Mexico City, Rio de Janeiro and Honolulu.
Individual action to curb climate change can be as simple as turning off a mobile phone charger when it is not in use, switching off the television or CD player at the wall, rather than leaving it on stand-by, turning off unused lights, or making sure office and home computers are completely shut down.
"Earth Hour is all about people sharing responsibility for reducing greenhouse gas emissions," said Al Shafar. "By turning the lights off for one hour on March 28, we can turn the lights on in people's minds about the need to find better ways to live on our planet and the need to save energy all year round."