Earth Hour hits Melbourne on Saturday March 19th - temporarily giving the flick to non-essential lights (but feel free to switch off anything else too). Endorsed by Cate Blanchett, Yoko Ono, Stephen Fry, Coldplay (and criticised by the smelly-armpitted Jeremy Clarkson), Earth Hour unites the planet, in it's effort to tackle climate change (plus help Saveáthe Ales). To sign up, or check out Earth Hour Australia's website. However, here's 5 reasons to start beforehand. Plus, 5min presentation I created paying homage to this issue - if you have absolutely nothing else to do.
Other day (well, last July when I originally wrote this) astounded to hear our little tacker suggest: "Hour of no electricity". Admittedly, yes, it is slighly annoying when he now randomly implements these blackouts. But I s'pose that's not the issue. What is, is the action itself. Which is synonymous with Earth Hour. Especially, as "Earth Hour is more than an annual event ľ it is a movement that culminates in an hour of inspiration across the world..." (courtesy of their FAQ page).
Benefits of these voluntary blackouts, ultimately over and above climate action. So much so, a sensible custom to adopt. Okay, sounding extreme. So let me add, that I'm not suggesting shivering in the dark. But ditching non-essential items on a properly-planned, properly-executed routine basis. Using Earth Hour as inspiration, rather than a 'be all and end all'. Some benefits I've unearthed (pardon the deplorable pun), including:
Something I've personally noticed, when technology buggers up it draws me closer to people. For instance, when the cars break down; appliances need fixing etc etc. But by proactively unplugging, you gain from (the fairly much forced) socialising - without the added unexpected costs/frustrations.
Ever catch that episode of Seinfeld where George Costanza abstains? The one where giving his libido a rest rebooted his brain. Okay, whilst Costanza is...well, Constanza, ditching habits can be a breath of fresh air. You don't have to go hiking in the mountains or become Allie Fox. Rather, can be achieved by sometimes just abstaining from daily luxuries.
1000's of ways to be frugal. 1000's of ways to be a dork. While saving a few bucks ain't trendy, stuff it, why not do it anyway? As every time you unplug, you inevitably save money. Stingy. But pretty darn easy. I mean, if Warren Buffet resides in the same house he bought in the 50's, might be something to it. That is, perhaps worth considering how important that important really is.
Helps you better appreciate
Whilst I'd wager you work damn hard, you mightn't realise how hard. Do you ever stop? Give yourself a breather? Seems we're rushing to our grave. Stepping back from the chaos, sometimes providing a desperately needed pitstop. Not only in terms of your wellbeing, but regaining perspective.
And of course, environment
No doubt you're aware of climate change. Whilst it may not have entered our own backyard, a definite threat. One pressing issue at the moment: diminishing bee populations - given, pollination's essential for many of our food sources. Hence, unplugging for this particular reason alone, probably sufficient in itself.
You don't have to wait till Earth Hour, nor cease afterwards. You can make it part of your own monthly/bimonthly/triannual ritual. For ideas, head here and download the All-Year-Event Guide (head to General FAQ, click on "What else can I do once Earth Hour ends?"). And if you want to up the ante, head here for some extra tips. Not to mention, this guide, specifically designed for Australians (individuals plus businesses).