Posted on 14 February 2012
14th, February, Dubai, UAE:
As the largest environmental event in history, Earth Hour today launched its 2012 campaign “I Will If You Will” to showcase how everyone has the power to change the world they live in.
For the first time, Earth Hour, being held on 31 March, is taking a giant leap from its annual lights out event to offer a further opportunity for its communities to be part of the world’s environmental solution.
Earth Hour began as a one city initiative in 2007, and has since grown to be a 5,251 city strong global movement, reaching 1.8 billion people in 135 countries across all seven continents.
The “I Will If You Will” digital platform created by global ad agency Leo Burnett, is the result of a collaboration with YouTube, therefore bringing together the world’s biggest social video platform with the ‘world’s largest action for the environment’.
The “I Will If You Will” campaign uses the YouTube video platform to empower people to share a personal dare with the world by asking, “What are you willing to do to save the planet?”
Earth Hour Co-Founder and Executive Director, Andy Ridley says “I Will If You Will” is the obvious next stage in the environmental campaign’s evolution.
“I Will If You Will gives every individual the opportunity to inspire their friends, colleagues and neighbors to take sustainability actions not just on the hour but beyond the hour,” said Ridley.
The concept of “I Will If You Will” centers around providing a social contract for two parties – connecting one person, business or organization to a promise and their friends, family, customers or members to a challenge – uniting them behind the common goal of creating a positive environmental outcome. The simple promise can range from recycling, to switching to energy efficient light bulbs, turning off your mobile charger, or signing up for paperless banking.
In the UAE, participation in Earth Hour began in 2009 and the popularity of the campaign has increased year on year with landmark after landmark across the emirates switching off lights and residential areas plunging into darkness for Earth Hour. In 2011, all 7 emirates saw official participation from key landmarks including; Sheikh Zayed Mosque, Burj Khalifa, Al Qasba and Fujairah Fort. Committed partners facilitated the organisation of many events across the emirates partners, galvanizing with the support of the UAE community.
Earth Hour 2011 also saw tremendous participation from businesses, government authorities and individuals. More than 400 businesses officially signed up for Earth Hour reaching out to their employees and customers, media covered the campaign extensively, and communication through social media alone was estimated to reach over 100,000 people.
This year, Emirates Wildlife Society in association with WWF (EWS-WWF), plans to make Earth Hour the biggest it has ever been in the UAE by getting even more people involved in the global movement.
Ida Tillisch, Acting Director General of EWS-WWF said “We call on all UAE residents to participate in Earth Hour and in the I Will If You Will Challenge. We all have the power to make a change. It is only through the collective action of every individual, business and government throughout the world, that we can make an impact.”
Several partners and ambassadors in the UAE have confirmed their participation, and EWS-WWF hopes that the list grows. Earth Hour 2012 will take place at 8.30pm – 9.30pm on Saturday 31 March
Visit the Earth Hour UAE website here: www.ewswwf.ae/earthhour
Visit the Earth Hour YouTube platform here www.youtube.com/earthhour
About Earth Hour
Earth Hour is a global initiative in partnership with WWF. Individuals, businesses, governments and communities are invited to turn out their lights for one hour on Saturday March 31, 2012 at 8:30 PM to show their support for environmentally sustainable action. The event began in Sydney in 2007, when 2 million people switched off their lights. By 2011, Earth Hour was being reported as ‘the World’s largest campaign for the planet’ with participation in 135 countries and territories across every continent, including the world’s most recognized man-made marvels and natural wonders in a landmark display of environmental action.