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Lights go off downtown for an hour to draw awareness to climate change

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Saturday, some buildings in Calgary – and around the world – turned off the power for an hour, drawing awareness to how anyone can make positive change for the environment.

Calgary Tower was one of the landmarks to go dark between 8:30  and 9:30 p.m. Saturday, as a gesture of the commitment to action on climate change.

At Central Library, a free family celebration took place, including displays and activities like pedal powered bike generators.

Organizers said Earth Hour is about showing people how even small changes can make a difference for the environment.

"To support people in feeling both connected and empowered," said organizer Jared Blustein. "To take action on climate, so I think too often, we can feel kind of depressed about the state of our climate or climate concerns.

"This is really just about coming together and celebrating and feeling like – a lot of people really care."

Earth Hour was started by the World Wildlife Federation in 2007. 170 countries take part in the program.

Earth Hour celebrations at Central Library in Calgary, March 25, 2023

SAVE NOSE CREEK

Earth Hour also prompted a group called Save Nose Creek to give a tour Saturday. It is advocating for the creek valley to become a national urban park.

The group says it's important to find a balance between development and green space, saying Nose Creek is already unhealthy and development close to the creek could make it worse.

"The watershed needs protecting," said Andrew Yule, of Save Nose Creek. "The biodiversity needs protecting, the history – there's a lot of First Nations and settler history in this valley – and just community green space.

Save Nose Creek is advocating for green space in north central Calgary

"This is north central Calgary and we don't have a lot of green space," he added. "Naturalized green space that we can go to."

The Save Nose Creek advocacy group is hoping to present its case to the Calgary Metropolitan Region Board this year.

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