In the US, nearly 35,000 Girl Scouts participated in Earth Hour 2012 through their Save Energy Project by installing 132,141 energy efficient light bulbs in homes and community centres, eliminating 77,553,119 pounds of CO2 emissions, the equivalent to the CO2 sequestration from planting 7,495 acres of trees per year.
And in Argentina, Earth Hour organisers and WWF affiliate Fundacion Vida Silvestre Argentina is mobilizing thousands of participants to help champion the passing of a Senate bill to make Banco Burwood the biggest Marine Protected Area (MPA) in the country. If successful, the 3.4 million-hectare MPA will raise the level of protection of Argentina's Exclusive Economic Zone from 1% to 4%.
Landmarks switching off for the first time for Earth Hour this year include Copenhagen's The Little Mermaid and Florence's Statue of David. This is also the first year Cape Town's Table Mountain will switch off on Earth Hour since its ascendance into the New 7 Wonders of the Natural World.
The long list of visually captivating icons that will switch off for Earth Hour includes Sydney's Harbour Bridge and Opera House, the first icons to take part since the campaign's inception in 2007, before landmarks across Asia including the Tokyo Tower, Taipei 101, Bird's Nest (Beijing National Stadium) and Kuala Lumpur's Petronas Towers, celebrate their actions for the planet.
The Indian subcontinent will have the Gateway of India switch off, at the same time as 4 villages in Madhya Pradesh receive solar lanterns, the first form of energy they will ever use. Earth Hour then makes its way through the Middle East, where the world's tallest building, the Burj Khalifa in Dubai will go dark for one hour before Earth Hour proceeds to the ancient city of Erbil in Iraqi Kurdistan.
In Palestine, Earth Hour will be the first environmental action/event taking place since the UN recognized it as a State, with switch off events taking place at Al-Jundi Square and Palestine Square in Gaza. Earth Hour is being coordinated from both Gaza and the West Bank, with switch off events taking place in Gaza City, and the cities of Nablus, Bethlehem, and Ramallah.
From Tunisia, which officially participates in Earth Hour this year right up to Vaduz Castle, the palace and official residence of the Prince of Liechtenstein, Europe and Africa will stand together. Eleven cities and towns in Tunisia will participate in the lights off event, with the main event taking place at Avenue Habib Bourguiba, the historic venue of the initial protests that triggered the Arab Spring. It will be attended by Tunisia's President Moncef Marzouki. Dubrovnik city walls in Croatia, the Eiffel Tower in Paris and Berlin's Brandenburg Gate will also join the world's largest voluntary action for the environment.
Buckingham Palace, Tower Bridge, the Houses of Parliament and Big Ben in London will be the main landmarks in the United Kingdom to go dark. Then Earth Hour makes its way across the Atlantic Ocean to South America, with celebrations in Peru reaching from the Pacific, to the Andes and into the Amazon River, also one of the New 7 Wonders of the Natural World - Iquitos, the city where the Amazon River begins, is taking part.
The Big Apple will also have its most famous landmarks take part with Times Square, and the Rockefeller Center switching off, alongside New York City's famous Empire State Building. The bright lights of the Las Vegas Strip will also go dark for the hour, as well as LAX and Niagara Falls.
Earth Hour 2013 will take place at 8.30pm - 9.30pm on Saturday 23 March.
For live updates on Earth Hour 2013 starting Thursday March 21, go to http://earthhour.org/live.
See the Earth Hour 2013 Official Video at www.ehour.me/2013ViD.
Press images can be downloaded at http://earthhour.org/media-centre/images.
Downloadable video footage of the global event will be available in four B-rolls for media, covering major regions at http://www.earthhour.org/media-centre/videos.
Earth Hour Canada media centre: http://www.wwf.ca/events/earthhour/media/
To join the Earth Hour community head to:
-- Earth Hour Canada www.wwf.ca/earthhour-- Earth Hour Global www.earthhour.org-- Facebook www.facebook.com/wwfcanada-- Twitter www.twitter.com/wwfcanada-- YouTube YouTube.com/EarthHour">www.YouTube.com/EarthHour
About WWF's Earth Hour
Join hundreds of millions of people worldwide and switch off your lights on Saturday, March 23 from 8:30 PM to 9:30 PM. Visit www.wwf.ca/earthhour to join the movement.
WWF's Earth Hour is an opportunity for individuals, businesses and communities around the globe to unite in a powerful call to action of hope for a better, healthier planet. In Canada, BMO Financial Group and the Toronto Star are the national sponsors, Ontario Power Authority is a regional sponsor and Staples Canada is the education sponsor. As sponsors for WWF's Earth Hour, BMO Financial Group, Toronto Star, Ontario Power Authority and Staples Canada will harness their incredible ability to engage employees and reach customers in spreading our message and encouraging individual action.
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