Lighthouse to go dark for Earth Hour

One part of the North East coast will be plunged into darkness this Saturday – for a good cause.

Friday, 29th March 2019, 1:57 pm
Updated Friday, 29th March 2019, 1:59 pm
St Mary's Lighthouse on St Mary's Island. Picture by Jane Coltman

The usually-beaming St Mary’s Lighthouse in Whitley Bay will be turned out for an hour between 8.30pm and 9.30pm on Saturday as part of North Tyneside Council’s commitment to supporting Earth Hour.

Earth Hour is the world’s biggest switch-off event, where millions of people from across the planet switch off their lights and organise events to show they care about the future of the planet.

Paul Nelson, the council’s Environmental Sustainability & Street Lighting Manager, said: “Taking care of our environment is one of our top priorities here in North Tyneside and we are delighted to be supporting Earth Hour once again.

“As a council, we’d like to say a huge thank-you to everyone who gets involved with Earth Hour – although this is just one hour, for the council, like so many residents and businesses, this is a very public display to represent the work we all do throughout the year to reduce carbon emissions and protect our planet.”

The iconic landmark’s switch-off is just a small part of the work the council has done to reduce its carbon footprint over the last few years.

In 2016, North Tyneside Council adopted the ambitious Low Carbon Plan 2016-2027, which is designed to build upon its carbon reduction activities that have been ongoing since 2010 and sets a 50% target for reduction of carbon emissions.

These activities have focussed on energy reduction and improvements to the energy efficiency of its buildings to reduce its carbon footprint.

And as a result of this, the Council’s CO2 emissions have seen a reduction of 39% since 2011, falling by over 11,000 tonnes; from 29,785 tonnes in 2010/11, down to 18,166 tonnes in 2017/18. Similarly, CO2 emissions across the whole of North Tyneside, including homes, industry and transport have reduced by 37.