Earth Hour is upon us again and this year the organisers are asking people to go beyond turning off lights and instead make an Earth Hour resolution to start something bigger. Greg Bourne, WWF-Australia’s CEO said ‘switching off lights is a great first step, but your true environmental impact is much bigger than just your energy bill. Each individual’s environmental impact – or environmental footprint – is made up of things such as the food you eat, the transport and housing you choose, and the goods and services you buy’. We can’t agree more. It’s the careful consideration of these goods and services, and selection of those which have lesser environmental impacts which can make a significant difference not only to your environmental footprint but also to the wellbeing of those involved in the growing and manufacturing of those products.
We know this, and we know how time consuming it can be, that’s why we aim to do the hard work for you by product testing, investigating green alternatives, researching eco innovations and bringing you more details on genuine eco products and services to help you become a greener human being.
We know that Australians have a pretty large environmental footprint but research undertaken by WWF indicates it is getting worse. Australians have the fifth largest ecological footprint per capita in the world. Up from sixth worst in 2006.
But our behaviour is changing and there are simple things that can be done to reduce your footprint such as:
- Ditch the take away coffee cup to reduce landfill and amount of resources used to produce your daily pick-me-up. How about getting hold of a recyclable keepcup.
- Go meat free for a day or two a week. Hundreds of litres of water are needed to produce one kilogram of beef!
- Double the efficiency of your car by putting another person in it.
- Cut one flight per year or take fewer, longer holidays, or holidays closer to home.
- Recycle your electronic gadgets, old mobiles, iPods, TVs, computers and radios contain lots of material that can be recycled such as gold, copper and coltan. None of this needs to end up as landfill.
- Every night turn items on standby off at the wall.
This year the world’s three tallest buildings, the new Burj Khalifa in Dubai, CN Tower in Toronto and Taipei 101 in Taiwan are going dark for this global event. These join world famous sites, such as the Sydney Opera House, Sydney Harbour Bridge, Buckingham Palace, the Great Pyramids, Eiffel Tower, Empire State Building, Golden Gate Bridge and even the lights of Las Vegas in a decisive display of climate action.
Although perhaps not up there with the likes of Buckingham Palace, turning off the lights in your cottage, apartment or house will help to make a difference. So at 8.30pm on Saturday 27 March 2010 get ready by the light switch to give it the flick. Don’t forget to sign up on the Earth Hour website to show your support, so that your efforts appear in their stats!