This year, WWF South Africa focused #EarthHourZA on a national call for a renewable energy future through a bold petition targeted at the energy utility.
We asked South Africans to sign, telling Eskom to lead the country into a greener, more equitable energy future to help the country create new, cleaner jobs and meet its international obligations to the global Paris Agreement on climate change.
Since August 2016, Eskom has refused to sign any further independent power producer contracts within the country’s Renewable Energy Programme. These contracts would put more renewable energy quickly, and cost effectively, onto the national grid.
Instead, the utility continues to pursue an energy mix that relies heavily on coal which is both expensive and also responsible for the majority of South Africa’s carbon emissions. Eskom is also actively promoting unaffordably expensive and environmentally questionable new nuclear builds.
Over 13 000 South Africans signed the petition, giving wings to the call for a clean, green future.
WWF South Africa will present the petition to Eskom to demonstrate that a large number of South Africans support renewable energy and are calling on the utility to stop putting the brakes on these energy sources.
Marking the Hour
This year, the Earth Hour website was flooded with events hosted across the country by enthusiastic South Africans.
The response was inspiring and the images shared were proof of the power of Earth Hour to bring people together for a single cause!
In the Western Cape, WWF together with Wildrunner hosted an Earth Hour adventure dash at the Kirstenbosch Botanical Garden while families were invited to join for a picnic.
The V&A Waterfront joined the switch off with an event at the Amphitheatre with Sunshine Cinema – a mobile solar-powered cinematic experience.
In Gauteng, the College of Digital Photography in both Saxonwold and Pretoria used the magic of Earth Hour to host a class in painting with light.
The province’s first Earth Hour trail run/walk took place at Danielsrust Game Farm.
Globally, 187 countries, 3000 landmarks and millions of individuals, businesses and organisations switched off for change.
Taking action Beyond the Hour
In the afterglow, we can go beyond the hour through our daily choices and decisions to conserve natural resources and spread awareness about opportunities for collective action.
We’ve put together a list of things you can do to make changes in your own life.