Earth Hour 2008 was a huge success with cities around the world reducing their energy consumption for an hour.
In Christchurch, New Zealand, power usage dropped by 12.8 per cent during Earth Hour. That’s more than double what the organizers were hoping for. Christchurch was New Zealand’s official host city for this year’s Earth Hour.
Here’s a sample of cities that participated, along with their reported power savings:
- Christchurch saved 12.8 per cent (although some reports have it as high as 13.1 per cent)
- Canberra saved 11.4 per cent
- Toronto saved 9 per cent
- Ontario saved 5 per cent
- Ottawa saved 4 per cent
- Sydney saved 300 megawatts
- Sydney (central) saved 8.4 per cent. Last year, Sydney saved 10.2 per cent during the world’s first Earth Hour.
- London saved 2 per cent
- Bangkok saved 73.3 megawatts of electricity
These results are a stark contrast to cities like Wellington and Regina – cities that didn’t participate. Wellington and Regina’s power usage actually increased during Earth Hour! It’s not known exactly why this occurred but it’s suspected that the cold and wet weather had something to do with it. Many people had their heater on in Wellington, and none of the cities landmark buildings had their lights turned off.