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Guest zzmikezz

Earth Hour

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Anyone participating? I think it was in Thailand that they saved78 megawatts of power. That's a lot.I am.JimCYWG

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Well we did in Australia - but then we follow just about any stupid craze. Interestingly the TV stations that so heavily promoted the concept didn't shut down their broadcast. Just shows how hypocritical people can be when money is invoved.Never mind we showed them !But that begs the question " Showed what? and to whom? " Roger

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You don't "save megawatts". At most they may have saved 78 Megawatthours.If the average bulb is a 60W bulb (which sounds high, given the prevalence of TL tubes, halogen and low energy bulbs which are lower in Wattage), that means 1.3 million bulbs were turned off for one hour that would otherwise have been turned on.If there's an average of 10 bulbs in a home (not too high a number) that's just 130.000 homes taking part in a nation that has many millions.I'd call that an utter failure for the organisers :)

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Thank you, jwenting. Just imagine how much more impressive the story would have been if the savings had been expressed in picojoules.

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Or if they'd mentioned that the powerstations aren't going to slow down when people turn off their lights for a single hour on a single day.Now if all those people were to turn those lights off permanently, and sit in the dark every day of every year, it might make a difference.But I've this nagging feeling that that's not going to happen, and that the majority of people taking part in this farce actually decided to turn off the lights at home and spend the evening elsewhere, at a brightly lit restaurant, a well heated bar with a wintergarden, or a big screen movie theater.

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"....and that the majority of people taking part in this farce..."Events like "Earth Hour" still mean something to people. Isn't it better to not say anything at all? Or don't you know the meaning and intent of restraint? For what it's worth, I turned my lights off upstairs while my wife merrily kept hers on downstairs. And I think both of us were happy with our decisions and respected the other's. My wife didn't call my take on this nonsense and I didn't point a finger at her and shout "BIG POLLUTER"! I did spend that hour elsewhere--sitting on my deck staring into space and enjoying the 25C evening breeze here in the desert. A great way to waste time on your perceived farce. J

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In my part of the world, electric energy is generated by water power. Turn off a light bulb and the water continues to flow over the dam via the spillway rather than thru a turbine penstock.Addtionally, my house is heated by a combination of electric water heater, appliances, light bulbs that may be on and a natural gas fireplace that fires up when the 'frig, stove, lights and w/heater are not up to the job.Turn off the lights and my gas fireplace comes on with almost certainly more air pollution than that of a hydro dam. In fact, changing from incandescent to flourescent light bulbs will cause my "polluting" fireplace to burn longer.-------PS- I've invented a perpetual motion machine and I'm looking for investors !!!!Alex Reid CYYJPSS- Forgot to mention the contribution my computer makes to heating my home & avoiding pollution !

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JohnCi,If "a little" is good, why isn't "much more" vastly better? Why not do as jwenting suggested? Or is it that the real goal of Earth Hour is to allow the participants to feel good about themselves? There's nothing wrong with wanting to feel good about ourselves, but we shouldn't kid ourselves that anything is accomplished by an event like Earth Hour (other than indoctrination of kids), any more than printing a slogan on a tee shirt accomplishes anything.

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For those who recognize that Earth Hour is an entirely symbolic gesture and *not* a practical gesture, it is just fine. For those who take the gesture and apply it to their everyday life, doing a better job of conserving energy going forward, it is a good thing!But for those who think that Earth Hour itself does anything to reduce emissions from power plants, it's important that they understand that it does not. Coal, oil, and gas fired power plants do not slow down or reduce their burning for the variations in the electrical load over the course of one hour. Nuclear plants don't slow down. In fact, Earth Hour ends up creating MORE pollution per used megawatt, simply because the fractional reduction in used load results in a fractional increase in wasted production.If events like this can raise awareness *AND* get people to conserve energy in the long term, they have a place. But, if someone hangs their hat on participating in Earth Hour as their "good deed for the day" but then returns to their daily habits of lighting up their home like the Rockefeller Plaza Christmas tree, well, the event misses it's mark.-Greg

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I understand Mike, I don't feel Earth Hour accomplished any goal related to reducing energy, but perhaps it made some more aware or more willing to join their neighbors in something other than arguing over who's going to win the latest round of "Big Brother". The point I was trying to make to Jeroen and perhaps the forum in general is why insult those who gain something by calling it a farce? Why does every thread like this get hijacked into a broader discussion? We all know there's people here in the forums that are smarter than we are. But given in this world it seems you're more likely to die of a random bullet in the inner city than cancer, why can't a thread be opened like this without someone pointing out the negatives and making those who participate feel their effort is meaningless. Why does someone (usually the same person(s) have to suck the optimism from threads like this, even if it's false optimism? I'm not just talking about Earth Hour. The same baloney happened when some of us dared post here celebrating the Wright Brothers' flight.

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JohnCi,I wasn't trying to ridicule anyone. I remember the literally killer fogs in the NYC/NJ area as a kid, and I remember how coal powerplant pollution control cleared that problem up.But we can't conserve our way to a solution. (To what may no longer be a problem.) If useage of fossil fuels is growing by 10% per year (my guess) then a conservation-driven 20% reduction will only push the problem out by two years, if problem there be.I don't want my standard of living reduced for this kind of "solution" to this kind of "problem", and I will ask that people actually think about what is going on rather than simply emote about it.

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That's exactly my point.A lot of people think that they're making "a difference" by turning off their lights, they need to learn they don't.Replacing a single bulb with a low energy one does work, replacing them all and maybe thinking about whether you need all those bulbs in the first place does even more.And yes, I did that years ago, I've been running all low energy bulbs for over a decade now.

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It's a farce because it doesn't do what the inventors claim it does and they know it, which is to "save energy".If it makes people aware of the fact they can reduce their energy use (and thus save some money as well as reducing their nation's dependency on foreign oil and/or other energy sources) that's a far better result, but it's not what the inventors (claim to) state the goal is.It's indeed a feel-good thing for most people, and I don't think they'll do anything more for a year until the next time someone tells them to do something "for the environment" that doesn't do more than give them a reason to go out for dinner instead of watching tele.Far more damning, I seriously doubt whether Al Gore or the bosses of Greenpeace and similar mass market "environmentalist" groups turn off all the lights in all their homes and offices. The guys from the small groups may, they're often more zealous and less in it for the money and power.

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While you were turning your lights off, Algore was flying around in his private jet countering your efforts. ;-)

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"Algore was flying around in his private jet countering your efforts."Nah, as I mentioned in my email, the more immediate threat was my wife downstairs. Fortunately her beauty makes it easier to tolerate such indiscretions, whereas Al Gore looks like, uh well, Al Gore.JC

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