Through the kind offices of Mary Faure, Chairperson of Hermanus Tourism, your editor had the privilege of meeting Andy Ridley. You may well ask who he is, as I did. Andy is the person who had the brilliant idea of Earth Hour in Sydney 2007. Andy is a Brit who went to Australia to snorkel the Great Barrier Reef, saw a job going with WWF in Australia and stayed. He is now Earth Hour CEO and is based in Singapore.
Andy’s experience and innovative thinking has helped to make Earth Hour a significant movement around the world. According to Andy, EH should not just be about earth hour, but should be the vehicle we use to draw crowd attention to an aspirational vision.
By using the event to generate enthusiasm and commitment around a cause, great things can be achieved. In Argentina, people power saw a 3.4 million hectare Marine Protected Area (MPA) approved. That will more than triple the proportion of the Argentine seas under protection. In Russia, Earth Hour mobilised the social media to gain protection for a forest twice the size of France.
What can we achieve here on the Whale Coast? Watch this space and be prepared to get involved!