About 2,400 kWh of energy were saved when 65 buildings in Moscow went dark during the global Earth Hour on Saturday evening, according to the estimates by the Russian capital’s electricity utility MosSvet.
The event began in Moscow at 20:30 local time [16:30 GMT]. This year, it was held in Russia for the fourth time.
Earth Hour is organized annually on the last Saturday of March by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF). The initiative traces its origin back to Australia in 2007 when businesses and residents in Sydney turned off their lights for one hour to make a statement about energy use and global warming. A few years later, it became the largest voluntary event in history.
The head of Moscow government’s department of natural resources and environmental protection, Anton Kulbachevsky, said the aim of the campaign was to promote a more environmentally friendly way of life among the Muscovites, not just to save electricity.
“If there is no response from the people, if they stay reluctant to our environmental policies, nothing will come out of it. The Earth Hour was designed to unite Muscovites and people all around the globe and raise their awareness of environmental problems,” he said.
WWF Russia chief Igor Chestin said he expected “several dozens of millions of Russians” to take part in the event.
More than 4,000 cities from 131 countries and about 750 major landmarks turned off their lights during the global Earth Hour event on March 26, 2011.