‘Earth Hour’ marked in Nepal
Demotix: The Earth Hour event was marked in Kathmandu organized by WWF which featured a live performance by Nepal’s finest in fusion which attracted about 5,000 youth.The WWF-Nepal organised two simultaneous events in Basantapur Durbar Square in Kathmandu and the Sacred Garden in Lumbini on Saturday to mark Earth Hour 2012, aiming to spread the messages on climate change and nature conservation.
The highlight this year was the Million Tree Project in Lumbini which was initiated on Earth Hour in 2011 in partnership with Lumbini Development Trust. With an ambitious plan to plant one million trees in Lumbini by 2020, that is 100,000 trees each year, five leading financial institutions of the country – Laxmi Bank, Siddhartha Bank, Bank of Kathmandu, Nepal Investment Bank and Nabil Bank – partnered with WWF-Nepal on the occasion of Earth Hour to contribute to this year’s target.
WWF-Nepal also brought together Buddhist monks from 20 different monasteries in Lumbini who led a special prayer session, ‘A Prayer for the Earth’, on the occasion of Earth Hour. The prayer session, which lasted for one hour, had each monastery lead individual prayers that merged into a single one as a finale to the event.
“Worldwide, Nepal is recognised because of Lumbini, the birthplace of Lord Buddha. It is therefore our duty to protect and preserve this sacred site which, apart from being an important pilgrimage site, supports a rich and diverse natural ecosystem,” remarked Maitri Mahastavir, Spiritual Advisor of Lumbini Development Trust. “Through Earth Hour, we want to promote the message of conservation – starting with Lumbini and travelling beyond its borders – as the way of life for human beings not just in Nepal but across the world,” he added.
In Kathmandu, the Earth Hour event which featured a live performance by Nepal’s finest in fusion, Resa Fusion, which attracted about 5,000 youth. Speaking at the programme, Krishna Gyawali, Secretary of the Ministry of Environment, and Nepali Congress lawmaker Gagan Thapa appealed to the youth to take the lead in shaping the future of Nepal’s conservation endeavors through individual as well as collective actions, both big and small.
At the event, WWF-Nepal also took the opportunity to announce a new youth campaign titled The Generation Green scheduled to be launched in late 2012. The five-year Generation Green campaign aims to build a supporter base of 500,000 youth in Nepal–the future ambassadors of WWF–who will be actively engaged in conservation and environment protection programs.
“On Earth Hour this year, thousands of Nepalese joined the global movement to help protect the planet,” stated Anil Manandhar, Country Representative of WWF-Nepal.