March 28, 2015

Earth Hour 2015

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It's that time of the year again, and for the seventh year I participated in Earth Hour.  While I stayed away from Victoria Harbor last year and simply jogged under the stars, this year I decided to go back and watch the harbor go dark.

I wanted to make sure that I was out in the open before 8:30 p.m., and after a quick bite, Hello Kitty and I quickly left Harbour City and walked towards the harbor front.  By the time we reached the water, most of the major commercial buildings on the Hong Kong side that I could see had gone dark.

All, that is, except for the HSBC Main Building in Central.  While they turned off the lights that are usually lit as part of the exterior structure, the newer LED panel was still on and playing a video.  Maybe somebody didn't get the memo.  Or maybe someone screwed up.  Or maybe they wanted to be the only thing visible during Earth Hour and show that, in its 150th year, HSBC really does own this town.  Whatever the case, the LEDs remain lit until 8:45 p.m. - a whole 15 minutes into Earth Hour.

The Agricultural Bank of China didn't get the memo last year, and its signage remained on throughout the entire event.  I'm glad to see that they decided to participate this year.

Anyway, we kinda hung out and enjoyed the evening breeze for the next hour or so.  Somewhere along the time, we did notice that the LEDs at the top of China Resources Building in Wanchai kinda came back pretty early... if they were turned off at all... At around 9:15 p.m. - 15 minutes before the end of Earth Hour, we started seeing a few commercial billboards light up in Causeway Bay.  Sogo was the first among them.

Two years ago, I complained that when the lights started turning back on, I felt the Samsung LED sign was incredibly blinding.  Tonight that honor goes to the LG sign, which seemed much brighter than its compatriot.  The LED panel above CCB Tower was a close second.

I was really happy to see the people of Hong Kong participate in this very meaningful exercise, even if it is largely symbolic in terms of the actual energy saved.  We really do need to work harder to conserve energy and help save our planet.

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