Turn on your lights from 8.30pm-9.30!
Remember all the fuss? What happened to Earth Hour 2013?
It’s that time-of-year for the hour of Green Darkness. But how times have changed. On Their-ABC, the only mention I can find is this: “Is Earth Hour dead?“ The Age and The SMH pay lip-service to Earth Hour with an article in today. But there is nothing like the hype of previous years. The Guardian puts on the best spin, but concede Lomborg might be right. Even the Huff Po is telling us it’s a waste of time.
It appears Lomborg took the fun out of it by pointing out that Earth Hour was a waste-of-time token that produced more emissions than it saved.
Earth Hour teaches us that tackling global warming is easy,” Lomborg writes at Slate. “Yet, by switching off the lights, all we are doing is making it harder to see.”
How so? Well, for starters, Lomborg argues that more than a billion impoverished people around the world have no switch to flip, lacking the electricity that we take for granted. Earth Hour, he implies, demonizes a technology that has lifted great swaths of humanity from lives of great burden and toil — and which the globe’s poorest still so desperately want and need.
The Australian home of “Earth Hour” is still pretending it’s a big deal, but they’ve shifted the emphasis from one hour of darkness to pledges of support for renewable energy. (Hey, out of 22 million Australians apparently 6,012 have promised to “support” renewables! Since we all “support” renewables with our taxes and electricity bills, that means only 0.03% of Australians do it voluntarily.)
They’ve signed up John Hewson to support it, and he’s enthused, and thinks a few hot weeks has got something to do with you leaving the lights on. But this exchange tells you all you need to know about our priorities.
[SMH] Mr Hewson, meanwhile, said his decision last December to become a director of Larus Energy, a gas developer in Papua New Guinea, did not detract from his renewables push.
“Gas is better than coal,” he said.“Take a place like PNG, I’d rather be burning LNG than burning diesel.”
Barely 12 per cent of the country has access to electricity, Mr Hewson said, and even the capital Port Moresby is routinely cloaked in smog after regular black-outs force residents to use diesel generators. “Everything’s an improvement on that.”
I’ll be celebrating the Power Hour
From my Power Hour post last year:
Some of those fossil fuels have been waiting for 100 million years to return to the sky.
Things you can do at 8.30 on Saturday:
- Turn on all the lights you can find (bonus points for incandescents from the stash.)
- Put on the party lights, the patio light, the pool light, the mozzie zappers, unpack those Christmas decorations. Get out your torches. Switch the movement detector spotlights to continuous operation. (Involve the kids — they love to help).
- Light your backyard with the landcruiser headlights! (Don’t flatten the battery, make sure you keep that engine running.)
- Don’t forget those bar radiators — revel in that infra red! (Light the kitchen with the ones in the oven and grill.)
- Eat Argentinian Lamb steak, Danish butter, Argentinian Cheese, Belgian Chocolate, and Californian Oranges.
- Drink German Beer and or French Champagne. Drink toasts to coal miners, oil rig workers, and power station staff.
In the hundred thousand years since homo sapiens came to be, people have fled bondage, wars, small-pox, dysentery, died from minor scratches, starved to death, been ravaged by lions, stricken by cholera, and survived ninety thousand year stretches of abysmal ice age. We lived in the darkness for 99,900 years, cowering in corners, listening to drips, waiting for the sun.
There is only one type of Freedom – and all else is servitude, slavery or tyranny.
It’s your chance to show your commitment to fighting the forces of darkness.