Saturday, March 29, 2014


AFP News - Lights went off in thousands of cities and towns across the world for the annual Earth Hour campaign, which is aiming to raise money via the internet for local environmental projects. Sydney's Opera House and Harbour Bridge were among the first landmarks around the world to dim their lights for 60 minutes during Saturday's event, organised by conservation group WWF. 
Hong Kong's stunning waterfront skyline was unrecognisable on Saturday evening, with the city's tallest skyscraper, the International Commerce Centre, stripped of the vast light show usually wrapped around its 118 stories. 
Blazing neon signs advertising some of the world's largest brands were shut off, leaving the view of the heavily vertical southern Chinese city peppered only with tiny lights from buildings' interiors.

An estimated 7,000 cities and towns from New Zealand to New York were taking part. Earth Hour partnered with payments giant PayPal to allow donors to contribute to specific projects from Russia and India to Canada and Indonesia, using Asian fundraising site Crowdonomic. Earth Hour chief executive Andy Ridley said before the lights went off in Singapore that the event had moved beyond symbolism to concrete action. 
"If you want to get real social change you need to have symbolism," he told the AFP news agency. "We are seeing some really big outcomes." Projects under the "Earth Hour Blue" crowdfunding scheme - which aim to raise more than $650,000 in total - include a turtle centre in Italy and funding for forest rangers in Indonesia.

Today, Earth Hour calls on residents, businesses and governments to switch off non-essential lights and other electronic items for an hour beginning at 8:30 p.m. local time Saturday to raise awareness about climate change. The event is being marked in more than 150 countries, organisers said, estimating that thousands of cities and towns would have taken part by the time the ceremonies began in Singapore. Earth Hour will see other landmarks including the Empire State Building in New York, the Eiffel Tower in Paris and the Kremlin in Moscow switch off their lights for an hour. Last year, 7,000 cities participated in the movement. A record 158 countries and territories are expected to participate in this year's Earth Hour event, according to the WWF website. The great power of Earth Hour is to have hundreds of millions of people around the world doing something together, all of them joined by a common purpose. It is an incredibly powerful thing. Earth Hour serves to remind people that when we put together billions of small individual acts then it is where the difference arises. Today we are making a small gesture to try that the maximum people around the world can be aware of the sad fact that the planet Earth, our home, is subjected to stresses that may make it uninhabitable for ourselves. There are always little things we can do every day to save energy and protect the environment. These are small gestures of each day which will help to change the trend that is leading us to make the planet Earth, a wonderful creation of the Supreme Lord, an uninhabitable place for all living beings. (Editor's note).

It’s time that humanity revert to and value a simpler, healthier, and more natural way of life. Only in this way may we attain true health, harmony, and prosperity. ... Nature is one of the manifestations of God; if we mistreat the environment, if we live irresponsibly, in any moment we will be sucked into an abyss. God is in each tree, each plant. The waters of the Earth are the veins of the Lord.  We should proceed with absolute compassion and responsibility, because by not taking care of other living beings, our present planet will become a complete desert.  Polluted waters cause the leukemia of the ecosystem. Mother Earth heals you, she allows you to build houses, sustains you, gives you drinkable water; that is our dear Mother Earth. If you cannot see divinity in the mud, in Mother Earth, it would be very astonishing to see it in anything.

Published by dasavatara das - "Vedic Views on World News"

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