Australia Canberra Copyright WWF Australia

Imagine if one night a year people in cities, towns, and homes across the entire world would turn off their lights for one hour to celebrate the one thing we all have in common: Earth. Pretty cool concept, huh?

No need to imagine any further; it exists! Earth Hour began in 2007 in Sydney, Australia when 2.2 million people and over 2,000 businesses turned off their lights for one hour to take a stand against climate change. Just a few years later Earth Hour has become the largest global sustainability movement—with over 4,000 cities across approximately 162 countries participating. These special 60 minutes enable global citizens to come together and raise awareness about the climate change affecting all of our lives.

Join energy savers around the world on March 28, 2015 from 8:30 to 9:30pm (in your local time zone) and click off the switch. You may celebrate by simply turning off your lights at home at the appointed time, or make an event of it and host an Earth Hour party with friends and family. You might want to stock the house with eco-friendly candles. Or take part in the hundreds of Earth Hour events taking place around the world.

Of course, you don’t have to wait until the appointed day. You can make your own Earth Hour daily by turning off lights when you aren’t in the room and by unplugging electronics to prevent phantom energy draw. These energy-saving hours add up; don’t be surprised if you save some cash on your next bill! Learn more and get involved in taking small steps that have a big impact by signing up for One Small Act.

Curious how others celebrate Earth Hour? Check out some of our favorite bloggers’ experiences and recommendations:

  • Living Consciously reminds us to not only turn off our devices, but to also pull the “vampire” charges out of the walls.
  • Groovy Green Livin’ has ideas for how to spend the hour, like having a candlelit dinner or taking a walk.
  • Mommy Greenest admits she often forgets about Earth Hour, but reminds us that you can do your part in honor of Earth Hour any hour (and hopefully many!) during the year.
  • Green4U has a slew of ideas for celebrating – like organizing a block party to spread the word AND get to know your neighbors!
  • Jen and Joey Go Green have great ideas for taking Earth Hour beyond a simple 60 minutes.
  • Green Child Magazine shares how Earth Hour can be a family event.
  • Diane from Turning the Clock Back encourages those who feel going green is too hard to take the first step by simply celebrating Earth Hour.
  • Climate Mama says Earth Hour is a great opportunity to begin your family’s “spring into action” plan, to make our planet a safer and more sustainable place.
  • Laura from The Soft Landing writes about setting a good example for your kids and using Earth Hour to teach them about the importance of protecting the planet.
  • Diana from the Big Green Purse has a bunch of tips for reducing energy use beyond Earth Hour and invites everyone to Join the global #EarthHour #yourpower conversation on Facebook and Twitter by posting photos of how you’re spending the hour. (Make sure your devices are charged up in advance, so you can truly unplug for the event!)

(Photo by © WWF Australia via Earth Hour)