Mar 24: Businesses Switch Off for Earth Hour

Earth Hour Festival

5pm to 9:30pm Saturday 28 March

Naremburn Park, corner of Park Road and Station Street Naremburn

Free entry

Register your interest 9777 1028

Willoughby City Council is calling for local businesses to take action on climate change by pledging their involvement in this year's Earth Hour. Businesses are encouraged to switch their lights off from 8:30pm to 9:30pm, Saturday 28 March.

Willoughby based businesses Adshel, Vodafone, Leighton Contractors, Chatswood Chase, Lindsay Yates Group, Smiths, 3, Sage MicrOpay, Snap Printing and Hatch have all made a commitment to Earth Hour, a global WWF climate change initiative that aims to reach more than one billion people in 1000 cities around the world.

Businesses are responsible for approximately 65 per cent of electricity use in the Willoughby local government area. Earth Hour asks that businesses switch their lights off for one hour but also reminds companies of the longer term commitment they can make to reduce their impacts.

"It's fantastic that so many of our businesses in Willoughby are taking part in Earth Hour. The simple act of turning lights off sends a powerful message that if all of us take small steps, our combined effort can make a huge difference to reducing Willoughby's carbon footprint. I would appeal to our business community to sign up to Earth Hour and get involved," said Willoughby Mayor, Pat Reilly.

"I commend the businesses that have already pledged their commitment to Earth Hour. I appreciate that for many of these businesses, the commitment is not just for one hour and they are working to implement long term goals for sustainability in the workplace," he said.

Vodaphone is taking a number of steps to reduce the company's carbon footprint and improve sustainable practices. The Chatswood site is conducting a waste audit in the lead up to Earth Hour and plans to reduce office waste and make recycling more accessible, replacing waste bins with more recycling receptacles. The company also plans to run staff workshops to promote sustainability in the home and office.

Hatch, whose Sydney office is based in Chatswood, provides custom process design; business strategies; technologies; and project and construction management for clients in the metals, infrastructure and energy market sectors. The company will continue to deliver the message of Earth Hour to its clients.

"Earth Hour highlights the need for us all to consider how we will adapt to climate change. Hatch has been helping local businesses identify energy efficiency and reduction opportunities and we are pleased to continue demonstrating our commitment to sustainability by participating in this awareness campaign because it reflects the way we do business," said Colin Tull, Sydney Manager of Hatch.

Adshel has its head office in St Leonards and provides advertising on street furniture, such as bus shelters. Adshel has been associated with the Earth Hour initiative since its inception. One way the company supports the event is by offering free advertising space across Australia.

This year Adshel will show its commitment to the environment through a host of activities including printing Earth Hour advertising on recycled posters; switching off lights in all nine Adshel offices in Australia and New Zealand; engaging their staff in an Earth Hour poster design competition with the winning entry to be displayed at St Leonards rail station in the second half of March; and participating in the Sustainability Advantage program.

Willoughby City Council is encouraging businesses to implement energy efficiency initiatives on an ongoing basis to help achieve the goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions in Willoughby. Sustainability Advantage is one of the sustainable business programs advocated by council. It is a business support service designed to help businesses understand sustainability, manage for a better environment, innovate, improve productivity and lower costs by improving energy efficiency.

Local businesses wishing to pledge their support for Earth Hour or be involved in sustainable business programs can phone Willoughby City Council on 9777 1000.

Turn off your lights for one hour to show your support for action on climate change and join us at Willoughby City Council's Earth Hour festival from 5pm to 9:30pm Naremburn Park, corner of Park Road and Station Street, Naremburn. The festival will feature performances by local entertainment groups, interactive workshops on recycling, renewable energy and drumming and will culminate in a spectacular, interactive drumming finale during Earth Hour with dramatic drumming performers and fire twirlers.

For media enquiries, to arrange an interview or photo please contact:

Rebecca Hill

Public Relations and Marketing Coordinator

P: 9777 7703

M: 0421 492 757

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