In a march 30 press release, Kawartha Pine Ridge District School Board Communications Officer, Judy Malfara announced that families throughout the Kawartha Pine Ridge District School Board (KPR) showed overwhelming support for this year’s Earth Hour.
By 3 p.m. Monday, 3,242 people had registered on the board’s website declaring they had participated in the one-hour event on Saturday night.
This compares with a total of 1,061 participants who registered in 2008, KPR’s first year of promoting Earth Hour participation. In addition, 26 families e-mailed stories or photographs of what they did during “lights out” this year. These are being shared on the Board’s website.
“We’re gratified to see the level of support for Earth Hour, in our schools and in our communities,” notes Director of Education Sylvia Terpstra. “Every school participated in some way, whether by holding a symbolic Earth Hour of its own during the week, by educating students about the importance of protecting our environment, or by ensuring all unnecessary lighting and other systems were powered down for the weekend.
“As a result, we estimate a reduction of about 2.5 tonnes of CO2 emissions,” she adds. “Even more importantly, we hope our efforts to promote Earth Hour and environmental responsibility will result in increased awareness and decreased energy usage year-round.”
The Board also sent a recorded telephone message to about 22,000 families with children in its elementary and secondary schools, encouraging their participation in Earth Hour. The calls were made from a central server that already operates 24 hours a day to manage the Board’s information needs, so no additional power was used to reach out to families.