Taking Action on Earth Day

earthdayThe famed Sears Tower in downtown Chicago is shutting off its antennae lights for one minute at 9:00 tonight – for Earth Day – to show its commitment to saving energy.

I was so moved by hearing this that I decided to commit to not only a few energy-saving actions of my own, but to use my influence on some well-known organizations to get them on board as well.

First – I will shut down my laptop today for one minute. Probably will be at a point at which I’m not using it, but still. I will also turn off all the lights before I leave the house today. Probably lower the heat, too. But I’m not stopping there. I’m also going to make sure that my solar-powered lights lining the front walkway to my house are correctly positioned to absorb sunlight. Pretty sure they are, because they’ve been on at night, but just to be sure and to show my commitment to earth day.

When I get in to work, I’m going to shut off my car after I park it, and then turn off my office lights every time I go to the bathroom. I will encourage my co-workers to only print and make copies of what they want, and nothing more. I will only flush the toilet once today and will make certain that the screen does in fact go dark on my iPod as it plays.

I’ve already called some friends of mine that work at a little company called Facebook. They’ve promised me to disable the Gifts feature and Selective Twitter Status application for 1 minute and 45 seconds. I have friends at Google too, believe it or not, and they’ve promised me they’ll simplify the Google graphic at 5 p.m. for about 10 minutes, making it easier and faster during that time for computers around the world to display their logo. I also placed a call in to Mayor Daley’s office and he’s promising not to inscribe any city signs with his name for one hour today. Admittedly, that will put them behind schedule quite a bit, but it shows their dedication to this cause. Finally, I spoke to some friends of mine in the U2 camp, and they’re halting construction on their gargantuan set for their upcoming tour for approximately 15 minutes (also putting them behind schedule for a July tour kick-off) and to use five fewer video screens, bringing the total numbers of energy-sucking video screens on the tour to 57.

Earth Day. What will YOU be doing?