On March 28, lights went out across the globe at 8:30 p.m. local time. Starting with New Zealand, countries around the world began to turn off their lights as part of Earth Hour 2009. Las Vegas, Nevada, went dark, as did Times Square in New York City.
As the official Flagship Campus of Maryland for Earth Hour 2009, St. Mary’s was no different. Starting at 8:30, Eastern Time, the lights in many of the residence halls, townhouses, suites and apartments went out one by one. With a variety of activities occurring across campus, there was no just sitting in the dark. Students could chose between hide and seek and flashlight tag at Calvert, a block party at Prince George, Caroline, and Dorchester, s’mores and glow sticks at Queen Anne, and a bonfire at Waring Commons.
Earth Hour, started in Sydney in 2007 in partnership with the World Wildlife Fund, is a global movement in which people turn off their lights at the appointed hour to “vote Earth.” Turning off the lights symbolizes supporting finding solutions to climate change and demonstrates concern for the planet.
The students at the College were among the millions of people who participated. Earth Hour 2008 saw 36 million people and 200 million cities across the globe turning off the lights. The results of Earth Hour 2009 will be presented at the 2009 Global Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen.