Capital 95.8 have launched its Lights Out London campaign. Blatantly plagiarising Sydney's 'Earth Hour', the radio station is busily garnering support from celebrities like Kim Wilde for the campaign, which encourages the whole of London to turn off all lights and non-essential appliances between 9 and 10pm on 21 June – the longest day of the year – as a way of promoting awareness of green issues. Al Gore apparently called for a similar Britain-wide plan last week, but this was stopped for fear of disruptions endangering hospital patients on life support machines.
So London's twilight turn-off won't itself save that much energy, although Sydney proudly reported a 10.2% dip in energy use. We don't, for instance, see it knocking back the earth's imminent destruction by a second or two. Putting aside the worry that the campaign might also make people feel a bit less guilty for next week's 'Let's Go Shop In New York For The Day' flight, we think that this campaign is, in itself, a 'good thing'.
Everyone needs to think about how they contribute to climate change, and this may be a good start for those of us who haven't got round to it quite yet. Just as long as we don't have to sit in the dark and listen to Johnny Vaughn for an hour. Oh god, please no. Fortunately, the radio counts as a non-essential appliance so our OFF switch will be firmly pressed and the plug hastily removed from the wall to make absolutely sure. Will Capital 95.8 stop broadcasting for those 60 minutes? With Buckingham Palace, Canary Wharf, the BT Tower and City Hall all in darkness, this could start to feel like a modern version of the blitz, but only with the population fearing Johnny Vaughn rather than bombs.
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Image taken from fotocitizen's Flickr stream