The Department of Health (DOH), together with the World Wide Fund for Nature – Philippines (WWF-Philippines), encourages all Filipinos to join the rest of the world in the celebration of Earth Hour 2023. The annual event takes the initiative of generating awareness regarding the current situation and solutions to help address the climate crisis, and likewise promote measures that help reduce energy consumption through the one-hour switch off.

Earth Hour 2023, with the theme “The Biggest Hour for Earth”, seeks to engage Filipino audiences through an in-person event to show solidarity and support in addressing Climate Change. The in-person Sustainability Fair, which will be held on Saturday, March 25 in the Quezon Memorial Circle, will have a switch-off program and a Run N’ Ride activity.

The program will feature delivery of key messages from WWF-Philippines and government officials, talks from WWF ambassadors, musical performances, a video presentation, and a countdown to Earth Hour at 8:30PM. There will also be various activities during the switch-off hour and booths in the Sustainability Fair.

Since 2007, Earth Hour has been known as the “lights off” movement, where households, businesses, cities across the world turn off all non-essential lights for one hour in a symbolic message of unity to raise awareness regarding climate change.

Due to human activities, the Global Climate Risk Index of 2019 identified the Philippines as the fourth (4th)-most affected country in the world by long-term climate change. The World Risk Report of 2022 ranked the Philippines first (1st) out of 180 countries with the highest disaster risk, as the geographic location of the country renders us vulnerable to geographic hazards brought by changing climate. These climate-fueled changes can be felt in the intensity and number of “extreme weather events” such as stronger typhoons, longer droughts, and higher temperatures. These weather events in turn cause economic, financial, environmental, and health problems for many Filipinos.

“The DOH recognizes the crucial role of the environment in promoting health and well-being for Filipinos. Hence, it is also our responsibility to care for the environment as it would then take care of future generations of Filipinos. Makiisa po tayo dito dahil ang kalusugan ng kalikasan ay kalusugan din ng bawat tao,” said DOH Officer-in-Charge Dr. Maria Rosario Singh-Vergeire.

To find out more about the Sustainability Fair and other activities you can do to reduce your climate change impact, visit earthhour.org.