City of Joburg

Johannesburg City Parks and Zoo


Johannesburg Zoo

 

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earth hourNail your colours to the mast to save the environment by spending Earth Hour at the Joburg Zoo. There will be no lights, but there will be bonfires and a night walk through the park.

As the sun sets over the city's skyline on Saturday, and darkness looms, people will gather at the Johannesburg Zoo to pledge their support to save the planet.

Earth Hour, the annual symbolic hour of darkness, will be observed globally on Saturday, 29 March. In Joburg, young and old have been invited to set up camp on the zoo's lawns, against the backdrop of the lion enclosure, for an unforgettable night. Bonfires will be lit around the campsite, and from 6.30pm to 8pm, visitors will brave the zoo at night.

The sounds of the wild – echoing animals, rustling leaves, whispering darkness – will accompany them as they venture on a walking tour. Lights will go out from 8pm to 9pm, to coincide with the global initiative. Earth Hour is held to unite people around the world in an attempt to raise awareness about saving the planet.

For the past seven years, on the last Saturday of March, millions of people have switched off their lights for Earth Hour in a symbolic gesture to pledge their support for global initiatives to combat climate change. Beyond the symbolic 60 minutes of darkness, Earth Hour has developed into a powerful, global, citizen-driven movement of progressive change for the environment.

In the run-up to Earth Hour, South Africa's division of the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), the international environment and conservation organisation, has called on all residents to make a public promise by posting their answers to the question: "How do you honour the Earth?" on the Earth Hour website. The intention is to change the way we behave towards the environment.

"If we all add our voice by sharing our promise, we not only uphold our own best intentions but we can motivate those around us," says Pedzi Gozo, the executive manager of communications at WWF South Africa. "The growing collection of promises forms an inspiring overview of the varied actions that everyday citizens are taking to make a difference."

Earth Hour started in Sydney, Australia in 2007 when 2.2 million homes and businesses took a stand against climate change and switched off their lights for an hour. A year later, Earth Hour was adopted globally, with about 50 million people in 35 countries showing their support. By March 2009, Earth Hour had grown into the largest global climate change initiative to date.

Earth Hour is supported by Archbishop Desmond Tutu, its global patron. It is organised by the WWF, one of the world's leading independent conservation organisations with a mission to stop the degradation of Earth's natural environment and build a future where people live in harmony with nature.

People wanting to honour Earth at the Zoo must arrive at the Anglogold Ashanti Conference Centre Gate from 5pm. The last entry will be at 6pm. Entry is R150 per person.

Issued on behalf of Bulumko Nelana, The Managing Director of Johannesburg City Parks and Zoo

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Noeleen Mattera
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Johannesburg City Parks and Zoo
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