Pint-sized environmentalist Hannah Alper is encouraging everyone, both young and old, to do more than just flick off their lights for the seventh annual Earth Hour.

The ten-year-old animal lover and author of the popular environmental blog says everyone should take time to reflect this Saturday, between from 8:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. local time, on how they can live a greener lifestyle.

“I try to motivate kids and adults to see how special the environment is and how much we really need it,” Alper said on CTV’s Canada AM on Friday.
Eco-blogger Hannah Alper
Eco-blogger Hannah Alper on CTV’s Canada AM on March 22, 2013. –>

Her project, called the Stop, Start and Continue Pledge, asks participants to download a ‘Pledge Certificate’ from her website, then use it to jot down three eco-resolutions.
“Stop is a negative [pledge] but can be turned into a positive one,” explained Alper. “Think of something you’re doing that’s harmful to the environment and then write ‘I will stop littering, I will stop using plastic water bottles.’”

Alper, who is an avid recycler and has a bin at home for reusable goods she donates to the Humane Society of Canada, lists a number of suggestions for pledges on her blog such as “I will organize a cleanup in my neighbourhood” and “Grow a garden and try to plant some of my vegetbales.”

“It makes you feel really good when you start doing it because you’re starting to make a difference,” said Alper, who had the opportunity to interview her role model, environmentalist and broadcaster David Suzuki’s daughter Severn-Cullis Suzuki, in February.

Alper said her favourite pledge is the ‘continue’ one which asks participants to persist with whatever eco-actions they begin.

“What’s so awesome about it is that you’ll realize you’re making a difference,” explained Alper, who has been named an Earth Hour team captain by the World Wildlife Fund, the global environmental group which organizes the event.

Earth Hour began as a Sydney-only event in 2007. The city’s iconic Harbr Bridge and Opera House went dim for the event. Last year, hundreds of world landmarks, including Berlin’s Brandenburg Gate and the Great Wall of China went dark for the annual event.

Across Canada, 511 municipalities promised to take part last year.

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Mar. 23, 2013
3:22 PM
Shame on all the old people who prefer to put their head in the sand rather than acknowledge they have a personal and moral responsibility to ensure the younger generations have access to a healthy and economic-supporting environment. Stop being so darn selfish and self-centered!
Mar. 23, 2013
11:54 AM
There are those of us who do the right thing – reducing power use – year round because we have to, being on low or fixed incomes. If you are on a fixed income, you reduce every cost as much as possible. A thermostat does not have to be higher than 20C during the day even with people in the home: there are things called sweaters to help keep a person warm, just what was used before central heating came around. If the home in empty during the day, why even keep it at 20? At night, and when the home is empty, why not choose 15C? Blankets and comforters do a good job – as they have for millennia – keeping the body warm in bed. And lighting with LED bulbs is cheaper than CFL’s and fluorescent tubes; and cheaper, too, if pro-rated over even half of the expected life of the LED bulb. If a person is already walking the walk, why should they symbolically switch off for a single hour? Far better that everyone should examine their energy use habits and make some, if not all, of the above mentioned changes. Earth Hour, is as some posters comment, purely a means for self-satisfied people to pat themselves on the back and pretend they are actually doing something, while at the end of the hour, their energy usage peaks again as they return to Saturday Night Sports on TV and all the trappings that go with it.
Mar. 23, 2013
10:30 AM
Luke and James Murphy have it correct, this poor girl has been brainwashed along with quite a few others. If you want to make a difference, start by cleaning up your own act. This “earth hour” nonsense is nothing but a political stunt (Yes, STUNT) designed to get fools to fall in line with the dictates of the organisers. The real issues and problems are ignored.
Mar. 23, 2013
8:44 AM
@luke of canada, I don’t think it is the young lady (@jill) that was brainwashed, (and maybe I can be included in the brainwashing thing as well). It is easy to sit on ones hands and do nothing, as shown on a couple posts, these people care only about themselves (me, me, me). But I do think that her point is, she actually cares about the future of the planet and the people on it, not just herself. I’m willing to bet that the people that care have children or (in my case) grandchildren. I’m on Hydro power but I’m still turning off lights and things anyway (not selfish). I think the brainwashing actually happened to you @luke of canada, and apparently it didn’t take much soap. P.S. Anyone with a few solar lamps doesn’t need candles (we think outside the box).
luke of canada
Mar. 22, 2013
7:06 PM
someone should be charged for brainwashing this lovely young lady… earth hour is a joke that actually increases emmissions! Electricity generation is not reduced at all, only the demand but the plants keep making it, so adding the billions of candles which give of CO2 net increases the problem… and the notion that we should live with less is garbage.. energy has been the one thing that is responsible for the health, growth and success of mankind
Mar. 22, 2013
4:29 PM
Why is someone who is throwing a tantrum (re: I’m turning on all my lights), giving advice on teaching children values? First off, Earth Hour does not attempt to reduce GHG emissions. It is meant to be a statement to politicians, corporations, and our neighbors that we care about the quality of the world we live in. Regardless of whether or not you accept science, you cannot deny the value of clean air and water. Even if climate change were a hoax, who cares? What, are the negative consequences of being a little responsible? A healthier, safer, prettier planet to live on? Bummer…? I hear this all the time: “Kids play too many video games, send them outside to play!” Many of us have said this, or agreed with someone who did. That said, put your money where your mouth is, practice what you preach…etc. Let’s start by giving them a great “outside” to play in! Let’s give them puddles to splash in that aren’t full of motor oil or untested chemicals; flowers to pick that can only grow if pollinator species survive; bugs to collect; Fish to catch; Birds to watch; Lakes to swim in, and bio diverse parkland to explore. Let them not have to consume industrial waste when eating snow or catching rain on their tongues! A person incapable of honest values should not demand better values from other people’s children. When someone has an over-abundance of self-interest, coupled with a real lack of self-awareness, we ALL have a problem. Before demanding anything from our children, you had better have something really good to say about what YOU have contributed. Happy Earth Day!
Doug in Cornwall
Mar. 22, 2013
2:34 PM
Why get the kids to pick up the garbage. It isn’t them that throws empty coffee cups and coffee trays out their car windows. Some commenting adults should get off their lazy butts and do it themselves. And turning on all your lights just proves adults are not as smart as some of these kids. Apparently there is proof that some people AREN’T as smart as a 5th grader.
James T Murphy
Mar. 22, 2013
10:42 AM
I’ll be sure to do my part by turning on every light on my property. This earth hour is a complete joke. You want to impact the environment? Get the kids to pick up garbage in their community instead of filling their head with politically motivated global warming nonsense. Putting kids to work gives them a taste of reality, that throwing their McDonalds wrappers on the ground requires resources to clean up.
Mar. 22, 2013
9:54 AM
This little lady is no the right track, but the event should be EARTH DAY or EARTH WEEK; an hour just doesn’t cut it. We poison our air, food, and water, drive animal species to the brink of extinction, then say this didn’t happen and the results don’t exist, or lay blame on someone or something else. Not taking responsibility for the results of our actions is just criminal. If we have learned anything in the past couple hundred years is how to rape and overuse our soil and surroundings to make a quick dollar, albeit at the expense of the environment as a whole. If we don’t have a respectful relationship with Mother Earth, then we are doomed as a species.
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