District aims for 3% power reduction during Earth Hour

Lights at the Leisure Centre will be dimmed between 8:30 and 9:30 p.m. March 26 during Earth Hour.For safety reasons, lights have to remain on at other district facilities, said Mike Younie, Mission’s manager of environmental services.

The District of Mission is encouraging residents to take part in this year’s event. Posters have been put up throughout municipal facilities, Earth Hour flyers are being distributed and announcements are being made in local newspapers and on the district’s website.

“Earth Hour is designed to allow people to express their concerns for climate change as well as sustainability issues in general,” said Younie.

During Earth Hour last year, electrical consumption dropped in Mission by 2.1 per cent, which placed Mission 24th out of 71 participating communities in B.C.

Younie hopes to see a three per cent decrease this year.

Organizers are also asking participants to plan past the important hour and consider ways to regularly conserve energy.

There are tips available through Earth Hour (www.earthhour.org), BC Hydro (www.bchydro.com) and Fortis BC (www.fortisbc.com) websites.

“We encourage our residents and businesses to review these websites and others to save money and help battle climate change,” said Younie.

Beyond Earth Hour the district is conducting an energy efficiency study and retrofitting buildings, as well as developing a Community and Energy Emissions Plan.

A symposium on resilient cities is being held March 24 to address sustainability issues. There will be a free public session in the evening, Younie added. More information about the workshop is available at www.mission.ca/resililent-cities-symposium-march-24-2011.