16 March 2009
Lighting in Hood Street will be turned off for one hour on Saturday, 28 March to mark Earth Hour 2009.
All street lighting and decorative lighting along the section of Hood Street from Victoria Street to Alexandra Street will be turned off from 8.30pm-9.30pm, during which time the public will be entertained by uni-cyclists, buskers and a fire performer. For safety reasons under-verandah lighting will remain on during this period.
Hamilton City Councillor and chairperson of the Community and Environment Committee Daphne Bell said the initiative is something unique for central Hamilton.
"It will be the first time that Earth Hour has been recognised in the city and will be something a little bit different for those people enjoying a night out on Hood Street," she said.
The initiative is Hamilton's symbolic gesture for Earth Hour, joining the Beehive, Christchurch Cathedral and Auckland Museum which are all switching off for the cause.
Hamilton theatre-goers will also experience their own slice of Earth Hour that night when the lights will go out for a minute at the beginning of Act Two of Shirley Valentine at Clarence Street Theatre.
Hamilton City Council Environmental Policy Advisor Aaron Fleming, who is project managing Hamilton's Earth Hour, said all residents are encouraged to acknowledge Earth Hour, regardless of where they may be on the night.
"Those soaking up the nightlife along Victoria and Hood Streets may enjoy dinner by candlelight, while families at home may choose to get out the torches and play board games or look at the stars," he said.
Crowds at this year's Balloons Over Waikato Festival will also experience Earth Hour when the lights go out as part of the Earth Hour Nightglow at Waikato University.
Hamilton's inaugural involvement with Earth Hour is the first flagship project to be delivered through the recently signed city-wide Environmental Sustainability Strategy.
Earth Hour began in Sydney in 2007, when 2.2 million homes and businesses switched off their lights for one hour. In 2008 the message had grown into a global sustainability movement, with 50 million people switching off their lights. Global landmarks such as the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, Rome's Colosseum, the Sydney Opera House and the Coca Cola billboard in Times Square all stood in darkness for the event.
This year Earth Hour aims to have 1 billion people switching off their lights.
For more information of Earth Hour visit www.earthhour.org
FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT:
Name: Aaron Fleming
Designation: Environmental Policy Advisor
Tel (Direct): 07 838 6483
Fax (Direct): 07 838 6464
Name: Kylee Bruce
Designation: Communication Advisor
Tel (Direct): 07 838 6726
Mobile: 021 816 917
Fax (Direct): 07 838 6761