Raise Your Voice For Nature

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Starting as a symbolic lights out event in Sydney in 2007, Earth Hour has grown to become the world’s largest grassroots movement for the environment. 

Since inception, Earth Hour has inspired and empowered individuals, communities, businesses and organisations in more than 180 countries and territories to take action. 

For Earth Hour 2020, WWF is highlighting the importance of nature for people and the need for urgent action to protect it. 

The Vital Importance of Nature

Too few people currently understand the vital importance of nature – and the huge threats it faces.

Millions of city dwellers might only experience nature via a screen and remain disconnected and unaware of how it underpins their lives.  

In South Africa – with our unstable power grid, water challenges, weak economy, job uncertainty and unrelenting poverty –  it is time we realised that healthy, resilient natural systems are also our safety net when all else fails. 

Nature is the planet’s life support system and gives us everything we need from the air we breathe to the water we drink to the food we eat. 

Nature also underpins the production of the most common goods and much of our way of life and provides millions of people with their livelihoods. 

Global estimates are that two billion people depend directly upon the land and coast for subsistence while the services provided by nature are worth double the world’s GDP (some US$125 trillion a year). 

Crucially in this age, nature is a key solution to counteracting climate change. According to a landmark UN report, we have only 12 years to avoid runaway global warming. Nature provides an immediate, cost effective, scalable and durable buffer against climate change. And yet we seem to value it so little.  

Natural climate solutions can be found in all landscapes, from tropical to temperate forests, from wetlands to grasslands and farmlands. There are opportunities to rebalance greenhouse gas emissions across them all. 

Healthy ecosystems offer our greatest protection against flooding and extreme weather events, and trees and vegetation help to capture carbon. 

Earth-Hour-Adventure

The Link Between People and Nature

The year 2020 is also a critical year for nature. This is the year when the future direction of three big UN policy mechanisms relating to climate, biodiversity and Sustainable Development Goals will be decided.

We need to seize this opportunity to secure an international commitment to stop and reverse the loss of nature that recognises the fundamental link between people and nature.   

Without recognising its benefits, people have taken more and more from nature, with human activity altering landscapes and ecosystems beyond recognition – polluting waterways, filling the oceans with plastic waste and destroying biodiversity on an unprecedented scale. It’s vital that we reverse this loss of nature while we still can. 

This Earth Hour, we need everyone who understands this vital truth to help spark millions of conversations and elevate nature loss to a global audience. We must stop the destruction of nature on which our health, happiness and prosperity depend. 

Earth Hour 2020 takes place on Saturday 28 March from 20:30 to 21:30. Raise your voice for nature this Earth Hour. Visit wwf.org.za for more information. 

Join WWF’s Earth Hour Adventure  

You and your family can take part in an orienteering-style ‘adventure dash’, suitable for all ages, in one of our beautiful national botanical gardens and help to raise funds for WWF South Africa’s environmental work.  

This year’s Earth Hour Adventure will take place at the Walter Sisulu National Botanical Garden in Johannesburg and Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden in Cape Town, starting from 18:00, on Saturday 28 March. 

Participants will navigate the gardens via torch (or headlamps) to hidden checkpoints dotted across a 5km course.

Everyone is then invited to enjoy a bring-your-own picnic on the lawns (coffee will be on sale to those who have brought their own mugs so as to avoid any plastic waste) in celebration of Earth Hour. 

Tickets cost R180 per adult and R100 per child. Gates will open at 18:00 and the event kicks off at 19:30 sharp. For more information or to secure a ticket email Somi Thinga at run@wwf.org.za. 

 

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