This was just forwarded to me, concerning a grassroots protest that some European NGOs are trying to organize on the quick. It involves everybody dimming their lights between 7:55 and 8:00 P.M. tonight. I don’t know whether they want everybody to do it at the same time (i.e., 19:55-20:00 GMT), or in their own time zones. In any case, it is novel.

Here’s a rough translation of the call to … er … fingers:

Take part in the greatest mobilization of the citizens against Climate Change!

L’Alliance pour la Planète [a French NGO] is launching a simple call to all citizens: let the planet rest for 5 minutes. Everybody should turn off their lights on 1 February 2007 between 19h55 and 20h00 [7:55 pm and 8:00 pm]. This action will not only save 5 minutes of electricity, it will also draw the attention of citizens, the media and decision makers to the wasteful use of energy and the urgent need to take action!

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Five minutes of respite for the planet: it will not take a long time, it will cost nothing, and it will demonstrate to the [French] presidential candidates that climate change is a subject which must take priority in the political debate.

Why on February 1st? Because the following day, in Paris, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) of the United Nations will be issuing its new report.

This event will take place in France: one should not let this occasion pass without impressing on the world of the urgency of the world climatic situation. If we all take part in it, this action will grab media and political attention, less than three months before the [French] presidential election!

Please circulate this message to as many of your acquaintances, and to all your networks!

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Hmm, I hope this isn’t just another chain letter!