Copenhagen Turns off the Lights for Earth Hour 2011

Events, free — By Jane Graham on March 23, 2011 at 12:00 pm

Candles are a familiar sight in Copenhagen—and on Saturday, there will be even more of them as many of the city’s hotels, museums and other attractions turn off the electric lights and invite guests to help the environment and enjoy the warm glow of natural light for Earth Hour 2011.

The annual global environmental initiative ‘Earth Hour’ takes place at the same time on Saturday, March 26 across the world—or at 8.30pm local Danish time. In Copenhagen, participating hotels include all those in the Brochner hotel group (Ibsens Hotel, Fox, Danmark and Kong Arthur) as well as the Absalon Hotel, First Hotel Kong Frederik and the Hilton Copenhagen Airport, all of which will be switching off the lights for one hour. Those staying at these hotels over the weekend are invited to enjoy a glass of wine in the friendly, candlelit setting of the reception or bar.

Danish candlelight

It’s not just hotels that are taking part in the event. Tivoli Gardens, Kronborg Slot in nearby Helsingør and art museum Ny Carlsberg Glyptoteket are also supporting the energy-saving initiative. Copenhagen Municipality meanwhile is not just backing the event—it’s turning it into a ‘climate party’, kicking off outside the City Hall on Rådhuspladsen at 8pm, when a temporary stage plays host to local artists Nabiha, whose recently released debut album “Cracks” received five out of six stars from Danish music magazine Gaffa,  and poppy sweetheart Thomas Holm.

It’s a big night for football fans in Copenhagen this Saturday, as the national team takes on neighbor country Norway in Oslo at 8pm as one of next year’s European Championship qualifying matches. Fans are urged to enjoy the game in less flood-lit surroundings.

Despite all these fantastic initiatives, Copenhagen still has quite a way to go to catch up with its Swedish neighbor Malmö when it comes to saving energy. WWF Sweden’s Earth Hour City Challenge inspired its county’s cities to present the most holistic plan for reaching zero carbon emissions and thus go ‘Beyond the Hour’: This week, Malmö was named Earth Hour Capital by an international panel of experts. While receiving the award from Sweden’s reigning monarch King Carl XVI Gustaf, Malmö’s mayor, Ilmar Reepalu said that, “ …Our goal is for Malmö to be powered by 100 percent renewable energy by the year 2030”.

Photo courtesy of Bo Nielsen/ Flickr.

Tags: Earth hour 2011, Environmental events, saving energy