UAE unites for biggest eco event
Dubai, March 27, 2012
The whole of the UAE will be plunged into darkness on Saturday (March 31) at 8.30pm in support of the world’s largest environmental event in history - Earth Hour, said a statement from Emirates Wildlife Society – WWF.
Emirates Wildlife Society is a national environmental non-profit organization that works in association with WWF, one of the world's largest and most respected independent conservation organizations.
The major landmarks will go dark across all the 7 emirates to mark the event, and public initiatives are planned to unite people behind a commitment to make a change for the future of our planet, said the EWS-WWF in a statement.
World-renowned buildings such as the Burj Khalifa in Dubai and the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi and Al Qasbah in Sharjah will be added to a long list of prestigious landmarks that will go dark as a symbolic gesture to remind people of the importance of conserving our natural resources, such as energy.
EWS – WWF has called upon individuals, governments, schools and companies across the UAE to take part in Earth Hour 2012. Residents can celebrate at home with friends and family or join one of the following public events.
The Municipality of Abu Dhabi is leading and co-ordinating an event at the Abu Dhabi Corniche which will include recycling stations and fun activities where Abu Dhabi residents can drum their support for Earth Hour in an event organized by Admaf as part of Abu Dhabi Music Festival, and join the celebrations on Abu Dhabi Corniche. The event starts from 6pm.
Dubai residents are invited to join a candlelight march in Burj Park Downtown and participate in array of environmental activities.
The public event organized by Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (Dewa) and held under the patronage of Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed Al Maktoom, the Crown Prince of Dubai, will also bear witness to the tallest building in the world; Burj Khalifa, switching off its lights for one hour to commemorate Earth Hour.
The event starts from 5pm, while the candlelight march will begin at 8:30pm.
In Sharjah, a family event is being planned in Al Majaz Park by the Environment and Protected Areas of Sharjah. Residents can participate in a host of activities including environmental competitions and a musical performance. The event starts from 6pm.
In Ras Al Khaimah, the emirate's tourism development authority has partnered with Al Manar Mall to invite the residents to join a public gathering with an acoustic performance by Fusion Again music band. The performance will start at 8:30pm.
In Fujairah, a low key event will take place in front of the municipality, with candles and floating lanterns to mark Earth Hour. The event will start at 8:30 pm.
There are a number of other public events happening throughout the emirates: please check within your local community or on the EWS-WWF website: www.ewswwf.ae/earthhour
Ida Tillisch, the acting director general at EWS-WWF said, 'Earth Hour is not about turning off your lights for one hour, but an opportunity for all of us to reflect on how our everyday actions impact our environment.'
'It is a platform for the world to unite for a cause that means something to us all. We encourage all residents to participate in this global initiative to demonstrate that by uniting our actions, we can make a difference and a positive change for our planet,' he noted.
The director of community services Dr Badriya Al Dhahri at Municipality of Abu Dhabi City said: 'The municipality’s participation in this annual global event is intended to express our commitment to safeguarding the environment, coping with climatic changes, saving power consumption at a local level, and reducing gas emissions to protect from global warming; the biggest challenge facing the planet in the context of genuine endeavours to provide a better means of living on earth.”
On Dubai’s participation, senior manager, Marketing Communication at Dewa, Amal Koshak, said: 'Earth Hour is a great and inspiring initiative for a better environment. It is a starting point for people to continue the passion and spirit of conservation and make a pledge, large or small, to preserve natural resources in their daily lives.'
'This year, we hope to show the world Dubai’s pledge towards a greener future, and we look forward to seeing the city enshrouded with darkness during Earth Hour – for our planet’s brighter tomorrow,' she added.
This year Earth Hour is calling upon the global community to further the quest for sustainable living by encouraging individuals to take to social video platform YouTube, and participate in the campaign’s ‘I will if you will’ challenge. ‘I will if you will’ empowers the community to do more by challenging others to do an action of environmental significance in return for a similar action of equal value by the challenger.
Set to bring the sustainability issue to the daily talk and thought, ‘I will if you will’ empowers individuals to share a personal dare with the world and ask “What are you willing to do to save the planet?”
In the UAE, this saw the participation of key characters and Earth Hour Ambassadors, such as Sheikh Abdul Aziz Al Nuaimi, known as the Green Sheikh, Ali Al Saloom, founder of AskAli.com, and Kris Fade, from Virgin Radio.
Earth Hour is a global initiative in partnership with WWF. The event began in Sydney in 2007, when two million people switched off their lights.
By 2011, Earth Hour was being reported as ‘the World’s largest campaign for the planet’ with participation in 135 countries and territories across every continent, including the world’s most recognized man-made marvels and natural wonders in a landmark display of environmental action.-TradeArabia News Service