Make the Hour Last

This Saturday, March 26, from 8:30 PM to 9:30 PM, the Dems will be shutting off all of our lights and gathering in Lowell Courtyard to celebrate the international recognition of Earth Hour (http://www.earthhour.org/Homepage.aspx). Though we all would like to say that we try to do all that we can each hour of every day to conserve energy and protect the environment, we admit there is always more that can be done. This hour we will gather to recognize what we already do and promote doing MORE.

Though our lights may soon switch back on after our celebration of Earth Hour has expired (Harvard students do, after all, have to study and, unfortunately, candlelit study sessions aren’t exactly condoned by Harvard fire regulations), we are nonetheless thinking of the many ways to make the spirit of the hour last.

This year, we hope you will join us in extending the energy of Earth Hour in the next month, to Earth Day (April 22, 2011), and beyond! At 8:30 PM on Saturday night, don’t just shut off your lights for the hour, but consider adopting one of the following resolutions to promote environmental friendliness:

1. Eat less meat (or none at all!).

  • A 2008 report from the United Nations cited that meat consumption constitutes for 40 percent more greenhouse-gas emissions than all the cars, trucks, and planes in the world combined, so put down that hamburger and grab some greens to go green!

2. Study in communal spaces.

  • The bright lights of Lamont shine bright all night, with or without you under them, so pick up your books, shut off the lights in your dorm room, and head on over to Lamont (or another communal workspace).

3. Use a travel mug or water bottle.

  • While you’re at Lamont, Starbucks, or wherever else that coffee craving consumes you, forgo the paper cup and use your own travel mug. You’re not only going to save the Earth but also save some dough as many establishments provide discounts on pricing if you use your own mug.

4. Print double-sided, and when you can – don’t print at all!

5. Join the movement.

  • Whether you join the Dems in our efforts to promote clean energy and climate change legislation or join one of the many environmental groups across campus and the country, there are plenty of ways to get active, involved, and vocal. To start, call or write your Senators and Representative to tell them that you think the environment should be their priority!

Although we encourage you to keep up these habits all 8,765 hours of the year, try adopting them from Earth Hour through Earth Day as a start – we know you can, and we certainly will!