FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 

The Golden Gate Bridge, Highway and Transportation District is pleased to be a participant in the Bay Area’s first-ever Lights Out San Francisco event. The decorative lighting on the two massive 746-tall towers of the Golden Gate Bridge will be turned off during the event, while all roadway and navigational lighting must remain on. The Golden Gate Bridge does not have lighting along its main cables as the Bay Bridge does, so the visual impact of turning off the decorative tower lighting will be not necessarily very noticeable. “As San Francisco’s premier icon, the Bridge Board of Directors wanted to participate in this important event and help bring awareness to the critical issue. The Bridge is a symbol and in this case a symbol for energy conservation" said Mary Currie, Golden Gate Bridge District spokeswoman.

 

Lights Out San Francisco Invites City to Turn Off Lights on October 20th from 8:00-9:00 P.M.; Install One Energy-Efficient Light Bulb to Save Energy

Event Gaining Momentum with San Francisco City Hall, Golden Gate Bridge, Alcatraz and Local Businesses to Darken Facilities in Support

 

SAN FRANCISCO (September 17, 2007) – Lights Out San Francisco, a community-based non-profit organization dedicated to energy conservation, announced today its inaugural citywide energy savings event (www.lightsoutsf.org). On Saturday, October 20 between 8:00 and 9:00 p.m., San Francisco residents and businesses are invited to turn off non-essential lights for one hour and install one energy-efficient light bulb in an effort to raise awareness about energy conservation and to reduce carbon emissions into the air.

“Lights Out San Francisco is an innovative way to incorporate energy conservation into our daily lives,” said Mayor Gavin Newsom. “This is an opportunity to fundamentally change the way people think about their energy consumption.”

This first-ever U.S. public call-to-action will be highlighted by the participation of some of San Francisco’s most notable landmarks. The Golden Gate Bridge will extinguish lights on its main towers (roadway lighting will remain on for safety); City Hall and other city buildings will turn off lights; the Golden Gate National Parks Alcatraz Island will also turn off lights.

“San Francisco is the ideal place to launch this energy conservation event because of the city’s strong commitment to environmental awareness and activism,” said Nate Tyler, founder and executive director of Lights Out San Francisco. “We’re amazed by the positive reception we’ve received, and we hope San Franciscans will create a model for energy awareness that can be adopted nationwide.”

Free, energy-efficient light bulbs, or compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs), will be distributed throughout the city during the months of September and October to provide resources for continued energy-saving. Bulbs will be donated by PG&E and Yahoo!.

“The goal of this program is to increase public awareness about simple energy conservation practices such as using energy-efficient light bulbs, taking public transportation, and unplugging appliances when idle – all viable ways to reduce greenhouse gas emissions,” said San Francisco Supervisor Jake McGoldrick.

The San Francisco Restaurant Association is organizing candlelight dinners throughout the city. Neighborhood coalitions are recruiting residents to turn off lights and host local celebrations. The list of supporters continues to grow. For more information, visit www.lightsoutsf.org/supporters.html.

It is estimated that one hour of energy conservation in San Francisco could save as much as 10 percent of the energy consumed on a Saturday night. A similar event recently took place in Sydney, Australia where by turning out the lights for one hour, 2.2 million participants conserved 24.86 tons of carbon dioxide that would have normally been released -- an amount of energy equivalent to removing 48,613 cars from the road for one hour.

After its San Francisco launch, Lights Out San Francisco plans to take its energy-conservation mission nationwide with Lights Out America in March 2008. The organization hopes to link its efforts with other cities around the world, including Sydney, London and others.

Demonstrating their commitment to energy conservation and environmental awareness are Lights Out San Francisco sponsors eSurance, Integrated Archive Systems, and Safeway.

Community supporters include: California Interfaith Power and Light, California League of Conservation Voters, Flex Your Power, Gap Inc., Golden Gate Restaurant Association, The International Dark-Sky Association, Neighborhood Parks Council, PG&E, Rainforest Action Network, SF Chamber of Commerce, SF Climate Challenge, Salesforce.com, San Francisco Department of the Environment, San Francisco Parks Trust, Sports Basement, Teacher With the Bus, Tides Center, Working Assets Wireless, and Yahoo!.

A citywide celebration will be held at Dolores Park on Saturday, October 20 between 5:30 p.m. and 9:00 p.m., where San Franciscans can come together to enjoy free live music ranging from local bands and DJs to Opera in the Dark.

Volunteers interested in becoming more involved with the Lights Out San Francisco can sign up to join the field campaign by contacting volunteer@lightsoutsf.org. For further information on how to get involved, or to make a donation to Lights Out San Francisco, please visit www.lightsoutsf.org.

About Lights Out San Francisco
Lights Out San Francisco is a community-based, grassroots energy conservation organization. Its inaugural citywide energy conservation public awareness event takes place on October 20, 2007, from 8:00 – 9:00 p.m. On this night, San Franciscans are invited to turn off all non-essential lighting for one hour. To promote a long-term energy saving commitment, free compact fluorescent light bulbs will be distributed throughout the city. Lights Out San Francisco is a project of Tides Center.

 

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