Social media tapped for Earth Hour awareness
Rhodina Villanueva (The Philippine Star) - March 1, 2018 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Conservation group World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) said it would use social media to raise awareness on the importance of biodiversity during the observance of the annual “Earth Hour” activity this month.

Earth Hour Philippines national director Gia Ibay, WWF Philippines Climate and Energy Program head, said, “The Earth Hour aims to make the people aware of the crucial importance of biodiversity as a viable resource link that families, communities, nations and future generations all depend upon. Understanding this interconnectedness is key in solving Earth’s most pressing challenges.”

Using this year’s theme and official hashtag #Connect2Earth, the group is encouraging everyone to harness the power of social media and help share their commitment to a “one planet lifestyle” by posting stories and photos of their sustainable living actions to care for the planet’s biodiversity.

“Sustained and concerted efforts are needed to help solve the planet’s deteriorating biodiversity that is further threatened by our changing climate. Governments, businesses and communities all win significant gains when all work together and bring positive change for the planet,” Ibay said in a news conference.

She added, “Let’s all preserve and conserve our biodiversity especially that tremendous loss of important species has been recorded through the years.”

Countdown is set for March 24 at the Cultural Center of the Philippines as WWF urges Filipinos to join the switch-off activity. 

Earth Hour attracts millions around the world to converge at major landmarks, cities and communities to address the plight of the planet and its people.

It started as a symbolic lights out event in Sydney, Australia in 2007 and has since grown into one of the biggest global open-source movement for the protection of the environment in more than 7,000 cities and 180 countries.

Over the years, Filipinos have embraced Earth Hour, inspiring climate action within the government, communities, businesses and organizations.

“Beyond the Hour” initiatives have inspired national advocacies pushing for low-carbon cities, renewable energy development, sustainable food production and consumption, forest and water conservation, and wildlife protection of endangered tamaraws, whale sharks and Irrawaddy dolphins, among others. 

WWF Philippines president and CEO Joel Palma said, “Collectively, we must now look deeper and see how our water, food and energy consumption is endangering our planet’s biodiversity. It’s time to connect to Earth and rekindle our role as stewards of the environment.”

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