Earth Hour 2017 A Decade Worth of Milestones
You may be probably older than Earth Hour 2017, but the decade-long celebration has surpassed many milestones more than your lifetime accomplishments combined. Being able to participate in the momentous event for the first time on March 25 at SM by the bay is a humbling experience, having had to hear efforts from public and private sectors how they contributed to the mounting success of #EarthHourPH2017. And then there’s me, who can only whine about the scorching heat and the afternoon wind that blew away my cool. Earth Hour Camp started at 4 p.m., and I was there. And boy summer heat and climate change is upon us all. Nature is bigger than us. After all, we, humans are just a speck of dust in the galaxy, trying to make a name out of themselves here on solid ground. We make do with what we need to survive. So, I went to the mall instead to cool myself down a bit and returned shortly before Earth Hour 2017 began.
Earth Hour 2017 is a celebration of many sorts – depending on what kind of epiphany or lifestyle you’ve had in trying to #ChangeClimateChange. Here’s Earth Hour 2017 information in figures and, as the generation today likes to put it, in feels.
What Went Down During Earth Hour 2017
1. First Earth Hour Camp
WWF – Philippines National Youth Council launched the Earth Hour Camp, consisting of interactive and educational booths that could help mitigate effects of climate change. The public is encouraged to manually try their hands at powering up solar lamps through an interactive game.
The native tree planting booth aims to educate passers-by with endangered local trees. Later on, WWF Ambassador Mikee Cojuanco-Jaworksi lets the audience know a fun trivia: Mahogany emits acid from soil! Those who care enough to take care of these humble beings can buy seeds from Qubo Urban Harvestry who wants to grow their mini garden. Sweet!
The third booth is all about disaster preparedness management. It highlights the importance of arming oneself with personal emergency bags that consists of basic survival kit such as food, water, medicines, clothes, and other items. Too bad the booth closed down at around 8 PM.
2. Big names joined Earth Hour 2017 for bigger impact
I am humbled with the presence of VIPs from SM (upper left), DENR (upper right), Pasay City Mayor, and Philips Executive. There are a number of speakers from private sectors who joined the event and committed to make Earth Hour 2017 have a lasting impact. For SM, the shutting down of lights of 60 participating malls all over the country, plus its involvement of 18,456 tenants during the celebration seems a grand cause.
Philips Executive highlight the importance of using LED lighting system. The world consumes 15% of lighting energy, and switching to LED can also lessen its impact.
DENR also stressed that its major projects include proliferating mangrove and bamboo plantation. Both are said to have carbon sequestration potential that keeps the environment in balance.
Executives from Pure Energy and Energy Development Corporation also gave a short speech on renewable energy options in the Philippines.
Next to mother nature, their daughters – the beauty queens – also stole the show as they kept the media abuzz with their grace.
3. Fun-loving WWF Ambassadors with a big heart for the planet
Most of us in the crowd are in Starstruck mode. The night was hosted by longtime WWF Ambassadors Marc Nelson and Rovilson Fernandez. They were later joined by Iza Calzado and Mikee Cojuanco. Too bad Piolo Pascual made an appearance only in the WWF – Philippines first anthem music video, Together We Thrive. The event also named WWF – Philippines National Youth Ambassadors Janine Gutierrez and Andre Paras made a commitment to strengthen youth’s involvement in taking care of the planet. The two will be working hand in hand with the National Youth Council. Other WWF Ambassadors include Luis Manzano and the whole Legaspi Family.
Chi-Chi the Panda with two Beauty Queens and WWF Ambassadors
When asked how Janine and Andre plans on saving the earth one small step at a time, Janine replied that she makes sure all the appliances in her home are plugged off, and also makes use of shopping bags to reduce the use of plastic. While Andre makes sure he brings his refillable cup and utensils wherever he went, to reduce use of plastic as well. Iza also encouraged the crowd to say no to straws. Have you thought of ways how to save the planet your own way, Eventurers?
Rovilson Fernandez and Marc Nelson with National Youth Council members