New Delhi: You can do a bit for your planet tonight by expressing your concern over global warming-- just switch off lights between 8.30 and 9.30 pm!

More than 150 Indian cities will participate in the Earth Hour on Saturday, joining over 7,000 of their counterparts across the world in raising awareness about climate change and its impact.

Read More : Seven years on, Earth Hour gets bigger

The concept of Earth Hour was started in Australia in 2007 when about 2.2 million homes and businesses of Sydney turned their lights off for an hour.

India joined the Earth Hour movement in 2009, where 5 million Indians across 56 cities, 100 top public and private sector organizations, and local governments participated and saved approximately 1000 MW of power in that hour.

Last year, India's smaller urban towns like Guna, Etawah and Madla joined the campaign along with big metros like Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, Hyderabad and other state capitals.

Taking the event to the next level this year, Indians are not only switching-off lights for Earth Hour but also helping citizens to switch on to solar energy in villages that have no electricity.
    
Woodlands stores have launched an Earth Hour collection drive in their retail outlets across India, inspiring individuals to donate to help light up villages that have no access    to energy with solar power.    

ING Vysya Bank will light up one village in Odisha using renewable energy on the day of Earth Hour, and extend it into a year-long project, covering 50 villages by Earth Hour 2014.

Switching to renewable energy is the focus of this year’s Earth Hour in India, and a mega event is happening at Delhi’s Central Park, Connaught Place to spread the message.    

The event is a musical concert, with a performance by Rekha Bhardwaj, and hosted by actor Tom Alter.        

Celebrities joining the campaign in India include Bollwood actors Ajay Devgun and Abhishek  Bachchan along with world boxing champion Mary Kom, former cricketer Venkatesh Prasad, Telugu actor Shruti  Hassan and Delhi Chief  Minister Sheila Dikshit.

The Gateway of India and India Gate are the two landmarks switching that will be participating in the Earth Hour.

Be a part of the Earth Hour campaign. Plunge into darkness for an hour to conserve energy and ensure a bright future.

(JPN)

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