Eye on Monday: Earth Hour

 On Saturday, March 28, 2009, close to one billion people in nearly 4000 cities across more than 80 countries came together for an event called Earth Hour.  From the tiny Chatham Islands of New Zealand to the Palace of Westminster in London to the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, the symbolic gesture of switching off lights for one hour, beginning at 8:30 pm local time wherever you were at in the world, was designed with the hope of sending a message to the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen convening in December of 2009.  And that message is very simple:  With hundreds of millions of voices from around the world uniting behind a common desire, perhaps they – we – will help shape future government policies on climate change, as the Kyoto Protocol will be replaced in 2012. 

Put another way, turning off your lights or the lights of a major landmark somewhere in the world was your way of voting.  It was a Vote for Earth.  Did you vote?

Below are just a few images from this remarkable event.  In order, they are from Singapore, San Francisco, London, Athens and Chicago. 


San Francisco photo by Steve Rhodes

Parliament photo by benmason



Navy Pier photo by Taekwonweirdo

“All the darkness in the world can’t extinguish the light of a single candle.”  St. Francis of Assisi.

If the light from a single candle represents faith, the lone tea light seems a fitting metaphor for what was one hour of darkness hoping to illuminate the path for our planet to head in a new environmental direction.

Tea light photo by grange85 

Filed Under: LifeSociety

About the Author: Christopher Gabriel is the host of the cleverly named Christopher Gabriel Program on AM 970 WDAY in Fargo, North Dakota. You can hear him weekdays from 9 to Noon. As a writer and humorist, his work has been been published online by the Chicago Sun-Times, Reuters and publications within the Sun-Times News Group.

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  1. territerri says:

    I’m sorry to say that Earth Hour passed by without my participation due to unexpected company. I was aware of it though, thanks to Mrs. Wendy G. I hope that it has a profound impact.

    The pictures you chose for this post are beautiful and your words are a poignant reminder of a subject that’s so important to our world’s continued well being.


  2. Mike says:

    I had never heard of Earth Hour until I was browsing news articles online. By the time I read about it, it was too late to participate. I didn’t know it was such a big deal though! Awesome pictures!


  3. Beth Z says:

    Can we still be friends if I elected to leave the lights on and participate in The Human Achievement Hour?


  4. CGabriel says:

    After careful consideration that included high-level discussions with my people involving a full breakdown of your character, interests and scrapbooking ability, the conclusion is: Yes. We can still be friends . . . in natural light only. 🙂


  5. Beth Z says:



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