One hour, no power: Earth Hour could result in energy savings of more than 9 million kilowatt hours across UK homes

Lights out for the environment is the idea behind Earth Hour. And on Saturday 30th March, between 8.30pm and 9.30pm towns, cities, companies and people across the world will be turning off their lights and electronic devices to make a symbolic contribution towards helping the planet and reducing climate change.

Last year in the UK alone around 10 million people took part in Earth Hour and this year some of the world’s most recognisable landmarks, such as Buckingham Palace and Edinburgh Castle, will again be plunged into darkness as a visual display of their commitment to this cause. As part of this, lights will also go out at a number of E.ON sites including our Citigen district heating hub in the City of London, the Blackburn Meadows biomass CHP station in Sheffield as well at E.ON offices around country.

Families worldwide are also being encouraged to turn off their lights and electronic devices for Earth Hour. “The potential is immense”, says E.ON’s UK Chief Executive, Michael Lewis. “If every home in the UK were to take part, more than 9.6 million kilowatt hours1 could be saved. This incredible amount is around as much energy as could be produced by a single offshore wind turbine between Easter and Christmas this year2 or, closer to home, about the same energy as would be needed to boil more than 42.8 million kettles3.”

Greatest savings potential in the south east

What happens when the inhabitants of individual regions of Britain switch off their power for a full hour on this day? The south east of England offers the greatest potential for savings due to its larger number of households, namely more than 1.2 million kilowatt hours (kWh) followed by London (over 1.16 million kWh) and the north west (over 1 million kWh).

Energy consumption compared across UK regions

Region

Households

Potential power savings (kWh) during Earth Hour*

North East

1'141'400

403'920

North West

3'076'400

1'088'680

Yorkshire and The Humber

2'311'600

818'032

East Midlands

1'995'400

706'135

West Midlands

2'317'800

820'226

East

2'573'600

910'749

London

3'285'400

1'162'642

South East

3'630'100

1'284'624

South West

2'362'900

836'186

Wales

1'327'100

469'636

Scotland

2'416'000

854'977

Northern Ireland

790'100

279'602

UK (Total)

27'227'800

9'635'409

*Data based on ONS 2017 UK household statistics using average national consumption of 3,100 kWh a year.

Ends

Notes to editors

1 = Based on ONS 2017 UK household statistics using national average consumption of 3,100 kWh a year.

2 = Based on an offshore wind turbine output of 13.6GWh a year.

3 = Calculated by dividing the potential 9.6m kWh potential saving by 0.225 kWh, the average energy to boil a kettle (source).