The iconic Singapore skyline, which includes the towering Marina Bay Sands, the Singapore Flyer, Helix Bridge and the ArtScience Museum, went dark on Saturday evening for 60 minutes to celebrate the annual Earth Hour event, a global movement to raise awareness about climate change.
The event, a symbolic act of turning lightsoff to save energy and promote environmentalism beyond the said hour, was the largest Earth Hour gathering around the world this year with about 9,000 attendees. The event also consisted of the cast, director and producers of the upcoming film The Amazing Spider-Man 2.
The World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), the international organisation that spearheads the movement, which is headquartered in Singapore, declared Spider-Man as the first superhero ambassador for Earth Hour earlier this year. Andy Ridley, co-founder and CEO of Earth Hour Global, said they wanted something special for 2014. “We wanted a superhero that resonated with everyday people, and Spider-Man was the right guy,” he explained.
The theme for this year’s Earth Hour was “Use Your Power”, and both the organisers and the film’s cast and crew, such as lead actors Andrew Garfield, Emma Stone and Jamie Foxx, and director Marc Webb, encouraged people to become superheroes themselves by helping protect the planet. WWF-Singapore urged the public to commit to one or more of four simple acts: turning air-conditioning up by one degree; switching to LED lighting; using fewer plastic bags; and, taking shorter showers.
WWF-Singapore and The Amazing Spider-Man 2 group also promoted WWF’s Earth Hour Blue, the world’s first crowdfunding and crowdsourcing platform that aims to harness the power of the online community to raise funds and increase support for on-the-ground environmental projects across the globe. Some of the current projects on the website include Singapore’s anti-animal trafficking initiative called “Stop the Killing!” and “Power Up a Ranger”, an Indonesian conservation programme to help forest rangers to protect endangered animals.
Elaine Tan, WWF-Singapore CEO, said: “The collective power of everyone in Singapore and their commitment in going beyond the hour can help drive our cause forward. We have seen that with the success of WWF-Singapore’s crowdfunding project … This action proves that when people come together – from individuals, communities and companies, we can make a big difference. Everyone can be the ambassador of sustainability and drive positive change for the planet.”
The 2014 Earth Hour, which was celebrated in Singapore at The Float@Marina Bay from 8:30 to 9:30 p.m., was participated by over 7,000 cities and towns in 160 countries worldwide.