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Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Join the Biggest Earth Hour Celebration this coming March 31!


I Will If You Will.  You may have noticed the presence of this phrase in the cyberspace for a quite a while.  At the start, you may have probably encountered fun dares like "I will go to the gym everyday if Carl quits his too many cheat days."  Social media influencers took part on it and everyone just kept on daring one another with fun and excitement.  But a week after after, I Will If You Will got serious, but not foregoing the interesting part as well.  The statement turned into something like "I will reduce my carbon footprint if Carl will stop watching dolphin shows."  From status messages, it became graphic designs, and then videos.  And with the captured interest, social media influencers and other netizens started to get involved, and this time with much conviction.  WWF Philippines after which revealed what the campaign is all about.  It's this year's biggest and grandest staging of one of the most important celebrations in the planet... the EARTH HOUR!

‘I Will If You Will’ Pledges Snowballing 
Earth Hour 2012’s new ‘I Will If You Will’ handle empowers people to share a personal dare with the world by asking everyone what are you willing to do to save the planet?

The concept of ‘I Will If You Will’ centers around providing a social contract between two parties - connecting one person, business or organization to a ‘promise’ and their friends, family, customers or members to a ‘challenge’ - uniting them behind the common goal of creating a positive environmental outcome. The campaign has taken hold and ‘I Will If You Will’ pledges are now snowballing across cyberspace.

WWF-Philippines National Ambassador Marc Nelson has pledged to swim with sharks - in a Panda costume - and plant trees underwater while munching on a carrot, if 5000 of his Twitter followers pledge to avoid plastic and reuse shopping bags. WWF-Philippines National Ambassador Rovilson Fernandez, for his part, has pledged to run races clad in a Panda costume until April if 5000 of WWF-Philippines’ 23,000 fans opt to use stairs over elevators for a full month.

Cynthia Dayco, a mother and WWF-Philippines Facebook fan, has promised to let her son Josh play Minecraft an hour longer over the summer break if Josh remembers to turn off the lights and fan whenever he leaves his room. Lyjenunt Gonowon, another WWF-Philippines fan, has pledged to recycle if his friends promise to switch to energy-efficient CFL bulbs.

An enormous LED billboard along EDSA currently showcases pledges posted on the WWF-Philippines fanpage.

Famous faces around the world are speaking out to encourage participation and support for Earth Hour. Environmental activist and former US Vice-President Al Gore urged people to join the switch-off from a video message recorded from Antarctica. Pledges are coming in from a plethora of groups - ranging from top band Coldplay to global supermodel Miranda Kerr. As an open-sourced campaign, Earth Hour uses social media to connect a global community of people inspired to change the world we live in.

WWF-led Earth Hour Switch Off Ceremonies Goes Nationwide
From 8:30pm to 9:30pm this coming March 31, WWF-Philippines will again stage Earth Hour to inspire Filipinos to switch off their lights and dare their friends to save planet Earth. WWF-led switch-off ceremonies goes bigger this time as they are set to be held in three key locations in the country: Makati, Cebu and Davao - though other cities and towns are expected to hold well-organized events to observe the switch-off.

Makati City’s Ayala Triangle Gardens shall be the central hub for Luzon. At 6:30 PM on 31 March, glow-in-the-dark dance troupe Bailes de Luces and the Caracol dancers shall form the vanguard of an Earth-themed parade which starts at the Makati fire station and ends at Ayala Tower One - where WWF-Philippines National Ambassador Rovilson Fernandez shall host a programme with performances from El Gamma Penumbra, Brigada and other groups. No less than Earth Hour founder Andy Ridley shall lead the country’s main switch-off event, hosted by WWF with the help of Ayala Land and the Makati City Government.

Cebu City’s Plaza Independencia shall be the chief switch-off site for the Visayas. A festive street parade led by local Sinulog Dancers shall start from Fuente Osmeña Circle from 5:30 PM onwards. The Cebu switch-off further features a candle lighting ceremony capped off by the release of biodegradable sky lanterns. Cebu’s event is in cooperation with the Aboitiz Group and the Cebu City Government.

SM Davao shall be the main switch-off site for Mindanao. WWF-Philippines National Ambassador Marc Nelson shall host the switch-off, which features a tribal-themed parade around SM Davao at 6:30 PM. Black-light and fire-dancers shall woo the crowd with specialized routines once the city plunges into darkness. The Davao event is in collaboration with SM Supermalls, the Green Alliance and the Davao City Government. Earth Hour Philippines National Director Atty. Gia Ibay shares, “We’re extremely excited for this year’s switch-off ceremonies. Though the Visayas and Mindanao have always observed their own unique switch-off ceremonies, WWF has traditionally celebrated Earth Hour from Manila. To commemorate our country’s fifth Earth Hour, we thought it high time for WWF to observe the movement across the archipelago - which has always been what we’ve aimed for.”

Those who won't be able to join the switch off ceremonies in the said locations can also participate by switching off the lights of their houses or establishments from 8:30 to 9:30 pm on March 31.

Earth Hour began as a single-city initiative in 2007 and has since grown to be a 5251-city strong global movement, reaching 1.8 billion people in 135 countries across all seven continents. Earth Hour Philippines has led the global switch-off since 2009, ranking number one globally in terms of town and city participation for three consecutive years. A record-breaking 1554 Philippine cities and municipalities switched off in 2011, 1076 in 2010, 647 for 2009 and over 50 during the country’s inaugural Earth Hour switch-off in 2008.

Local Governments, Schools, Corporations Ready to Go 

Now in its fifth year, Earth Hour Philippines continues to grow. Current public sector partners include the Climate Change Commission, Department of Energy, Department of Environment and Natural Resources, Philippine Information Agency, Department of Public Works and Highways, Department of Science and Technology, Department of Agriculture, Department of Foreign Affairs, Department of National Defense, Department of Transportation and Communications, National Economic Development Authority, Department of Budget Management, Department of Trade and Industry, Department of Education, the Metro Manila Development Authority, League of Municipalities, League of Cities and League of Provinces of the Philippines. Philippine Media Champions include TV5, ABS-CBN, GMA-7, CLTV-36, Discovery Channel, Knowledge Channel, ZOE TV, Global News Network, Philippine Star, BusinessWorld, BusinessMirror, Philippine Daily Inquirer Online, Aftercall Magazine, Philippines Graphic, Radyo Veritas, DZIQ, DZAR, Globaltronics, QCreativs, Photoworld Manila, ASK and Illuminati Philippines.

Corporate partners include Arthaland, McDonald's, Globe Telecommunications, Primer Group of Companies, Core, York, Victory Liner, Aboitiz Group of Companies, Philippine Business for Social Progress, Ayala Land, SM Supermalls, Canon Marketing Philippines, the Makati Shangri-La Hotel plus Hyatt Hotel, Peninsula Manila Hotel, Casino Manila, Leo Burnett and Campaigns & Grey Philippines. The list of allies grows longer each day.

“More than anything, Earth Hour is a celebration of hope. When our planet plunges into darkness, we can look to the stars and dream of what can be. When the lights switch back on though - our real work begins.” concludes Ibay.

I Will If You Will Mechanics for Facebook Status
• On your Facebook wall, post a new statement that you will do for the environment, when you friend whom you will tag for a dare, take your challenge. For example, I will stop smoking if Carl will stop watching dolphin shows.
 • At the end of the statement, declare your support to Earth Hour by adding this line “I support Earth Hour. Please support it too.” and tagging WWF Philippines.
• You may do this as frequent as you can.

I Will If You Will Mechanics for Twitter 
• On your Twitter, tweet what you will do for the environment, when you friend whom you will tag for a dare, take your challenge. For example, I will stop smoking if Carl will stop watching dolphin shows. \
• At the end of the statement, declare your support to Earth Hour by adding this line “Let’s support #Earth Hour.” and tagging #IWIYW (short for I Will If You Will) and @WWF_Philippines. o Example: I will use the stairs instead of elevator if @popazrael will reduce his water consumption :). Let’s support #EarthHour! #IWIYW @WWF_Philippines
• You may do this as frequent as you can.

Earth Hour 2012 is set for 8:30pm on Saturday, 31 March.

I Will If You Will.  Let's do this for Mother Earth, our only planet, our only home.

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