29 March, 2010

Earth Hour

As a Brit in Japan I heard about the WWF Earth Hour event only after it was too late.  I saw pictures from the BBC news website which showed Japan's efforts in contributing to this challenge.

In an attempt to join in the fun they turned off the lights on Tokyo Tower...

just Tokyo Tower.

Now, anyone who has been to Japan knows that although the Tokyo Tower is very brightly illuminated the combined light from all the other areas in Tokyo casts the greatest amount of light pollution in the world, brighter than the BosWash megalopolis on the East coast of the USA.

If Japan really wanted to make a statement about their commitment to Climate Change then they could have turned more lights off.

Virtually every city I have visited here has a barrage of illuminations advertising products or even just lighting up shops when they are closed.  People living in Shinjuku have even been known to develop health problems relating to the lack of darkness in their lives.

So I sincerely hope that next year Tokyo switches off more than just the one landmark.

UPDATE:  The pictures on the Telegraph website show more clearly the lack of effort in Tokyo.

Apparently though, Hiroshima made a greater effort turning off the lights at their Nuclear Memorial Museum which would make a difference on their landscape but I haven't found any pictures yet.

I've also not heard anything about any other cities in Japan participating.

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