All eyes on Singapore for Earth Hour 2014

Spider-man, Earth Hour's global ambassador, will be swinging into Singapore for this year's lights-off event. (Image courtesy of WWF Singapore)

Now that Spidey and company are Singapore-bound for this year’s Earth Hour, all eyes are turned to the Lion City in the build-up to 29 March.

And its organisers, the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) in Singapore, are going big to encourage people here to consciously cut down on activities that harm the planet.

In June 2012, Earth Hour upped its global office from Sydney, where it operated since it organised the world’s first Earth Hour in Sydney in 2007, and shifted its headquarters to Singapore, where it has worked from since.

Earth Hour 2014 started its plans with the “Use Your Power” campaign earlier this month, launching an ongoing short-film and Instagram competition for students and budding young filmmakers.

The short-film competition, which will be judged by “The Amazing Spider-Man” director Mark Webb, is open to students from institutes of higher learning here, and participants are encouraged to create an up-to-3-minute film addressing steps the public can take in relation to climate change and other environmental issues.

Winning entries may be screened at the Singapore premiere of “The Amazing Spider-Man 2”, which is slated to open in cinemas here on 1 May. The competition will accept entries until 19 March.

Students aged between seven and 17 years old are also eligible to participate in the Earth Hour Instagram competition, which ends at the end of 13 March. The student who submits the winning photo will get to meet Andrew Garfield himself in person here.

Apart from that, it also includes starter kits for companies interested in bringing Earth Hour to their offices, as well as retail, F&B outlets, communities, schools and individuals.

The competitions will culminate in the star-studded event on 29 March, which kicks off with local performances and various Earth Hour activities from 5pm onward at The Float @ Marina Bay. The Spidey stars will arrive to join the festivities at 8pm, and the superhero himself will swoop by to help switch the lights off around the entire area for the hour.

Watch a trailer for this year’s Earth Hour in Singapore here:

Singapore is known for its high per-capita carbon footprint. According to figures from Singapore’s National Climate Change Secretariat, it is ranked 27th out of 137 countries, ahead of other first-world countries like Japan, the United Kingdom, Hong Kong, France and Switzerland, as well as regional giants China, India and populous neighbours Indonesia and the Philippines.

Its first Earth Hour was held in 2009, making this the sixth year Singapore is observing Earth Hour — and this year, its sixth, promises to be its most watched one ever.