Switch off for 60 minutes

COFFS Harbour Deputy Mayor Rod McKelvey is urging people to send a global 'Earth Hour' message tonight by turning lights off for an hour.

Earth Hour goes global, with cities and towns across the world taking a stand on global warming.

"If you want to show your support for cuts in greenhouse gas emissions, join with millions of other people and turn your lights out at home for just one hour at 8pm," he said.

Coffs Harbour City Council will be supporting the initiative by ensuring building lights, other than those needed for safety reasons, are switched off for 60 minutes.

"Earth Hour is a great way of publicising the issue of greenhouse gases, but it isn't just about one hour, once a year," Cr McKelvey said.

"In reality, it's about making long-term changes to the way we all use electricity and water both in the workplace and at home.

"In 2002, council set itself a target to cut its annual corporate greenhouse gas emissions by 20.per.cent from its 1995 levels by 2010.

"A recent review has revealed that we have already reduced our emissions by more than 60 per cent from the 1995 levels."

The measures introduced by the council include:! n High-efficiency fluorescent lights and control gear in council buildings.! n Energy-efficient street lighting, which cuts CO2 emissions by 650.tonnes a year.! n The use of 100 per cent renewable energy for all its electricity needs.! n Variable-speed drives in water and sewer pump stations.! n Smaller-engined cars in its vehicle fleet.! n Solar heating at the Coffs Harbour Swimming Pool.

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