Earth Hour campaign draws thousands of youth in HCMC

Thousands of youth in Ho Chi Minh City have come together to raise awareness for the 2013 Earth Hour campaign, officially held each year on March 23.

At the dot of ‘Earth Hour’, from 20.30 to 21.30 hours on March 23, people will switch off car engines at red lights for about 20 seconds and also all power lights in their homes for that one ‘Earth Hour’.
The Earth Hour campaign was first launched in 2007 in Australia and Vietnam officially joined the event in 2009. In five years, the campaign has become a major environmental movement, drawing more than 8,000 young local volunteers involved in various promotional activities.

‘Earth Hour’ propagates a greener and more environment-friendly lifestyle that begins at the grassroots level in a community. For this, the youth play an important instrumental role in influencing people and raising awareness.

The environmental conditions in Ho Chi Minh City in particular as well as in the rest of the country in general are seeing a rapid degradation, more so in water sources like rivers, which are now highly polluted.

In particular, the Nhue and Day Rivers, that are a water source for the Northern region, are now dead rivers. The Hong, Huong,Han and Dong Nai Rivers are facing the same fate with a high level of pollution.

Many inter-provincial meetings have been held, but the results so far have not resulted in any positive action. Export processing and industrial zones are still sneakily discharging untreated wastewater into the environment. Besides this, indiscriminate littering by the public has added to choking of canals, despite the local government, social organizations and volunteers mobilizing propaganda to bring about a positive change in the environment. Youth action groups are working to bring about more social awareness in people to improve this situation.

The largest environmental campaign on the planet is ‘Earth Hour’ which calls for a greener lifestyle. The campaign is encouraging all organizations, individuals, businesses, countries to adopt more sustainable lifestyles to save the environment.

The campaign calls for every individual on the planet to adopt an environment friendly lifestyle, backed with practical actions to save the environment, such as not using products that pollute the environment, turning off one light in your home or using only one air conditioner.

The Campaign does not only call for turning off lights on March 23 each year for one hour but also wants everyone to create a new sustainable environment for future generations.

By Mai An- Translated by Huyen Huong

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