So the World Wildlife Fund started a thing last year where cities agree to turn off lights for one hour in an effort to reduce carbon emissions. It has continued this year with many more cities participating.
While I applaud the spirit with which this effort was launched, I think the very effort of conserving energy is a waste of the intellectual energy that could better be spent figuring out how to free ourselves from carbon-producing fossil fuels. In my personal opinion, which is heavily shaped by that of my life partner, who knows quite a bit about the subject, the only viable, green, clean, alternative to fossil fuels is nuclear power. I'm trying to get my partner to write some stuff for this blog about the environmentalist case for nuclear power, so you might see that here soon.
In any event, I do not believe that turning off the lights for one hour is going to make enough of a difference in carbon usage, even as a symbolic thing, to really accomplish much of anything. Conservation is only a tiny part of fixing global warming. The thing that will really make a difference is eliminating fossil fuels, enacting strict pollution controls, and working on a global basis to figure out how to live greener.