As the world celebrated Earth Hour from 8.30 pm to 9.30 pm on Saturday, Delhi-NCR saved around 290 MW of power — at least 28 MW more compared to last year — as consumers voluntarily switched off their electrical appliances.
While BSES saved around 208 MW, the Tata Power Delhi Distribution Limited (TPDDL) managed to save around 82 MW this year. In 2016, BSES saved 207 MW and TPDDL saved about 55 MW. Together the two distribution companies saved around 262 MW in 2016.
Some of the city’s iconic landmarks including Rashtrapati Bhavan, Lotus Temple, Akshardham and India Gate voluntarily plunged into darkness for an hour on Saturday to mark the Earth Hour.
The national capital joined more than 7,000 cities across the world to celebrate one of world’s biggest annual environment events which was started by the World Wildlife Fund in 2007 in Sydney to highlight the issue of climate change.
“Earth Hour, a campaign launched 10 years ago, is a platform that allows people to stand together on climate change and adopt practices that can help us make positive changes and work towards a sustainable future,” said Ravi Singh, secretary general and CEO of WWF-India.
India joined the movement in 2009. A series of events and campaigns were organised in Delhi since Saturday morning, including a 21-km Cyclothon and 3.5 km walkathon titled Pedal for the Planet. Nearly 1,000 residents of Delhi-NCR registered for the event.
In the evening, a few hotels too switched off some of their lights. Innovative campaigns such as ‘Dine in Dark’ and especially curated theme buffet menus under candle lights were held to make the 60 minutes a memorable event for the guests.
Educational institutions also did their bit. JNU vice-chancellor M Jagadesh Kumar wrote on Twitter: “Let us observe earth hour by switching off non-essential lights in JNU from 8.30 pm to 9.30 pm.”
Several organisations, including BSES, Delhi Metro Rail Corporation, a few airlines, retail stores, and online trading sites among others supported the campaign to create awareness on climate change.