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SUBJECT: Grenfell: Earth Hour: Dim your lights for a brighter tomorrow

DATE: March 22

          Earth Hour is Saturday, March 27, from 8:30 to 9:30 p.m.

          Corner Brook residents and businesses are asked to turn off their non-essential lights for one hour. It’s part of a worldwide event being undertaken by the World Wildlife Fund to encourage governments to do more to stop climate change.

          “A number of organizations in the Corner Brook area including the Western Environmental Centre, First United Church, the City of Corner Brook and Grenfell College are working on promoting Earth Hour in this city,” said Dr. Edwin Bezzina, who teaches historical studies at Grenfell College.

          To mark the occasion in Corner Brook, an informal candlelit Earth Hour concert will be held in the First United Church basement. Music will be provided by Kevin Hamilton. Refreshments and sweets will be served.

          Sponsored by the World Wildlife Fund, Earth Hour is a global action involving many cities around the world. During Earth Hour, people in participating cities will turn off non-essential lights for one hour, mostly residents living in apartments and in houses.

          “We also would like to encourage businesses and government offices to do the same, to turn off non-essential lights such as their main outdoor neon signs,” said Dr. Bezzina. “Our goal is to get as many people involved in doing this as possible, to turn off or dim all non-essential lights, just for an hour. The intent is to not just to save electricity for an hour. The greater purpose of Earth Hour is symbolic: to send a strong message to our governments that more has to be done to fight climate change and to encourage people to consider, just for an hour, how they could reduce electricity use in their homes and workplace.”

          The event started a few years ago in Sydney, Australia; it was immensely successful – more than two million businesses and households turned off their lights for 60 minutes.

          “Photos of Sydney's downtown core taken before and during Earth Hour show a remarkable degree of involvement and participation,” said Dr. Bezzina. “This year, more than 80 countries and 750 cities around the world have committed to participating. Corner Brook participated last year, and now it is time to build on that participation. The more people who participate, the more impact the event will have.”
 
          “We all know about the science documenting climate change,” he said. “We all know what is at stake. What is needed now more than ever before is more political will to do something about this impending climate crisis. So please remember to turn off or dim your non-essential lights from 8:30 to 9:30 p.m. on March 27 and be part of a global movement to stop climate change.”

          To learn more or to register your participation, visit www.wwf.ca/earthhour/ . For more information contact Edwin Bezzina at ebezzina@swgc.mun.ca or 637-6200 ext. 6152.

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For more information, please contact Edwin Bezzina at ebezzina@swgc.mun.ca or 709-637-6200 ext. 6152 or Pamela Gill, communications co-ordinator, Sir Wilfred Grenfell College, Corner Brook, Memorial University of Newfoundland, (709) 637-6200 ext. 6134 or pgill@swgc.mun.ca.

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