Sunday July 14, 2024

Lights switched off at PA, other landmarks to observe Earth Hour 2019

By M. Waqar Bhatti
March 31, 2019

Lights were switched off for an hour – from 8:30pm to 9:30pm at the Sindh Assembly building in Karachi and several other landmarks in the country as well as at thousands of buildings and establishments in over 180 countries around the globe to celebrate Earth Hour 2019.

The Earth Hour celebration is a global movement to show commitment to energy conservation to protect the planet.

The WWF-Pakistan joined more than 180 nations around the world to celebrate the Earth Hour, the global movement united by millions of people worldwide to show their commitment to protect the planet. Landmarks across the country switched off their lights in solidarity for the planet and joined the WWF-Pakistan’s call to combat climate change.

As nature declines like never before, coupled with the ever-present challenge of climate change, Earth Hour 2019 focused on raising awareness of why nature matters as well as on inspiring global action on conserving nature.

The main Earth Hour event in Karachi was held at the Sindh Assembly, with lawmakers, senior management of the WWF-Pakistan, the vice chancellor of NED University, students from the University of Karachi and the Institute of Business Management, and representatives of different civil society organisations and media participating.

Speaking on the occasion, Dr Babar Khan, regional head of Sindh and Balochistan, WWF-Pakistan, said switching off unnecessary lights for an hour may seem like a small act, but collectively the magnitude of this gesture was unimaginable.

He maintained that a commitment to Earth Hour enables us not only to express our concern for our planet, but to also let the world know that we stand with them to find solutions to the rapidly escalating climate crisis. He emphasised the need to change attitudes of people towards the environment so that we can have a better future for coming generations.

Engr Dr Muhammad Amir Qureshi, director of Industrial Liaison, NED University, said that Earth Hour gives people an opportunity to go beyond the usual limitations and look at the bigger picture before them. On this Earth Hour, by joining the WWF millions of people around the world have shown their commitment to the planet.

He said he had joined this campaign to fulfil his part as a responsible global citizen and ignite a much-needed change in the perception through practical actions. “We should encourage and inspire the citizens of Pakistan, especially the youth, to be a part of this global change and secure a better environment for ourselves and for future generations,” he added.

Earth Hour events were also celebrated at the National Assembly in Islamabad, the Wapda House in Lahore as well at various offices of the WWF-Pakistan, including Bahawalpur and Khanewal, Faisalabad, Quetta, Peshawar, Nathiagali and Sukkur, where students, families, members of civil society organisations and representatives of government departments participated.

Other major landmarks across the country also participated in Earth Hour by switching off lights. These included Wazir Khan Mosque, Hazori Bagh, Supreme Court of Pakistan, Pakistan National Monument, Damn-e-Koh, Pak-China Friendship Centre, Shah Faisal Mosque, Convention Centre, D-Chowk, Lake View Park, and 7th and 8th avenues.

From the Eiffel Tower to the Sydney Opera House, and the Empire State Building to Burj Khalifa, thousands of international landmarks switched off their lights in solidarity for the planet, to raise awareness about the importance of nature, and encouraged individuals, businesses and governments worldwide to be a part of the solutions needed to build a healthy, sustainable future -- and planet -- for all.

The year 2019 marks the 12th anniversary of Earth Hour globally, which started as a symbolic event in Sydney in 2007. The one-hour event continues to remain the key driver of the movement encouraging individuals, communities, households and businesses to turn off non-essential lights as a symbol for their commitment to the planet.