Lights out in Zurich for WWF Earth Hour 2012
© Foto-net

The WWF Earth Hour is something that started as a simple idea in Sydney, Australia back in 2007 and since then has turned into a global event. On 31 March that year, more than 2.2 million households in the biggest city in Australia turned off their lights for an hour to make a symbolic gesture in favour of climate change.

The following year, Earth Hour had already spread to 370 cities across 35 countries, and since then the project has reached out to more people than any other environmental protection campaign. Last year, 1.8 billion people were involved worldwide in 5,251 cities and 135 countries.

Lights out in Zurich
This year's Earth Hour will take place between 20.30 and 21.30 CET on Saturday 31 March and FIFA, the governing body of world football, will be taking part in this event which supports the Football for Hope campaign.

With a Day of Action for its employees and an invitation to all 208 member organizations and over 60 Football for Hope supported organisations participate in the campaign, the commitment of FIFA goes far beyond switching off all lights at the Home of FIFA.

"These activities correspond with the efforts to reduce the negative influences that our organisation has on the environment, efforts we have been carrying out since the 2006 FIFA World Cup," explained Federico Addiechi, FIFA's Head of Corporate Social Responsibility. "Earth Hour is an excellent opportunity to turn the attention of our national associations towards environmental protection. Furthermore it is a welcome opportunity to encourage our employees to take part in environmental projects which go beyond the four walls of our offices and which therefore have a greater impact."

Support from the global family of sport
UEFA will also be taking part in Earth Hour 2012 and switching off the lights in their headquarters in Nyon, Switzerland. "Climate change is a global problem that needs a global solution. I am delighted therefore that UEFA is taking part in Earth Hour 2012," said Peter Gillieron, head of the UEFA Fair Play and Corporate Social Responsibility Committee.

These are just a few of the thousands of examples of support from around the world. Perhaps this article will also encourage you to turn out the lights in your house for an hour on Saturday night…