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Lights to be turned off at 72,000 facilities on Tanabata night (July 4, 2008)

The Ministry of the Environment announced on July 3 that the number of facilities participating in the Tanabata Light Down event has reached 72,818, including the Sapporo TV Tower and the Okurayama Jumping Hill in the city's Chuo Ward. Under the initiative, the lights of facilities across the nation will be turned off simultaneously on the night of July 7, the day of Tanabata (the Star Festival) and the first day of the Hokkaido Toyako Summit.

The lights-out will be conducted from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m. as an effort to prevent global warming. According to the ministry, a total of 1.088 million kilowatt-hours of electricity will be saved, with a reduction of around 420 tons in carbon dioxide emissions, which is equivalent to the amount emitted by 29,000 households per day.

Yoshio Tamura, administrative vice minister at the ministry, called on the public to participate in the initiative as a trigger to rethink the earth's situation and take appropriate action.

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