Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Moving forward

Again, Lights Out San Francisco was a huge success, thanks to all of you! We'd also like to extend a special thank you to the photographers who took some amazing before and after photos for us.

If you liked what you saw in Dolores Park last Saturday, check out what else Teacher with the Bus has to offer.

Building off of all the positive responses we've received from folks across the country and even around the world, we're moving forward with Lights Out America. Please join us in taking it to the next level by participating in Lights Out America on March 29th, 2008!

Sunday, October 21, 2007


A big thanks to all who participated in Lights Out last night! We are especially grateful to Jens-Peter Jungclaussen the Teacher With The Bus and all of our volunteers who made the event a great success. We had a good time in Dolores Park, and we hope that you had some fun in the dark too.

Here are some photos from before and during the event at Dolores:

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Google Turns Out Lights In Support

Ok this is very cool...our friends at Google have "turned out the lights" on their homepage for users in the Bay Area. I can see it but some friends are not seeing it yet. It may take some time for the page to find its way to all the local servers? They have written a special page for us as well:

Thanks Google!


Turn off your lights from 8-9pm and do one of the following, or think up your own way to make good things happen in the dark!

-Treat yourself (and someone else) to a candlelight dinner at one of our participating restaurants.

-Help us out by taking photos and emailing them to


Friday, October 19, 2007

Governor Schwarzenegger Supports Lights Out San Francisco

Yet another signal of support from our fearless leader in Sacramento. Governor Schwarzenegger shares his support for Lights Out San Francisco. He calls it an "illuminating" event!

Nancy Pelosi supports Lights Out San Francisco

We just learned that our very own, Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi issued a statement in support of Lights Out. Thanks very much for the support...


Pelosi Statement on Lights Out San Francisco

Washington, D.C. – Speaker Nancy Pelosi issued the following statement regarding Lights Out San Francisco, a city-wide conservation event in which organizers are inviting the entire San Francisco community to install one compact fluorescent light bulb (CFL) and turn off all non-essential lighting from 8 p.m. to 9 p.m.:

"Climate change presents a challenge to the survival of our planet. While there is an urgent need for decisive action to address climate change and greenhouse gas reduction nationally and globally, we must act locally as well.

"Solutions to the climate crisis must be as local as our neighborhoods and as global as the planet. By taking part in Lights Out San Francisco, each resident will be taking a positive step towards reducing green house gases emissions on a local level.

"Thank you to the visionary organizers of Lights Out San Francisco and to the many businesses, residents and visitors who will participate in turning out the lights in San Francisco and helping to reduce the energy consumption in our city."

Thanks to Craigslist

This just in.

Our good friends at Craigslist posted a link from their homepages in San Francisco and LA. Thanks guys...this will definitely help raise awareness of our event and save energy.

Help from some young friends

A big thanks to Raymond, Ryan and their friends at Holy Name School! They helped us pass out CFLs and information about LOSF at their elementary school. You guys have been a great help!

Arctic Warming

Evidence of global warming is made quite apparent by the disappearance of ice in the Arctic. Today, the New York Times ran an article demonstrating these effects: "New Coast Guard Task in Arctic's Warming Seas.

For more information on the effects of climate change take a look at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Arctic Report Card, which "indicate[s] that the overall warming of the Arctic system continued in 2007."

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Not sure what to do when the lights go out?

-Treat yourself (and someone else) to a candlelight dinner at one of our participating restaurants.

-Help us out by taking photos and emailing them to

-Learn How to Celebrate Candle Night.


Today's Press Conference

The LOSF team and some of our great supporters stood on the steps of City Hall today for a press conference. Watch for us this evening on KPIX-TV at 5 p.m. and 6 p.m, and possibly KRON-TV at 5 p.m.

Thanks also to YOUR TV20 for doing a great story on LOSF.

More humor

Thanks to Dan Piraro for giving me permission to post his Bizarro cartoon!

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

CFL info re-post

We've been getting quite a few emails and questions regarding CFLs. Below you will find some information that I hope will prove useful:

5 Ways to Recycle a CFL

How to live with CFLs

Sierra Club's "Mr. Green" on CFLs

In response to those of you who have asked about "dimmable" and other types of CFLs, I suggest you inquire about them at your local hardware store or search online.

Yesterday I spoke with a representative from the SF Department of the Environment about the best way to dispose of used incandescent bulbs. Unfortunately, the best way to dispose of them is to put them in the garbage. The good news is that, if you're replacing your incandescent bulbs with CFLs, you'll be saving resources in the long-run!

Lights Out Humor

Thanks so much to Michael Capozzola for creating an awesome LOSF cartoon! Click cartoon to enlarge.

Stargazing with San Francisco Amateur Astronomers

Our friends, the San Francisco Amateur Astronomers, are hosting a City Public Star Party on Saturday at Lands End (Point Lobos) beginning at sunset. There will be a lecture, followed by public viewing. For more information, visit their Calendar of Events.

Press update

LOSF and Lights Out America are popping up all over the local and national media. Over the past few days, we've been featured in or on abc7news, CBS 5, Inside Bay Area, Flavorpill SF, Flex Your Power Energy News, Marin Independent Journal, SFist, San Francisco Sentinel, KCBS, and Curbed SF.

We've also appeared in the following blogs: The Sundance Channel Blog, Adventures in Urban Living, National Geographic Traveller's Intelligent Travel", SOS Live Earth, Metroblogging San Francisco, The PosiPeople Blog, and a new us.

For the most updated news coverage of Lights Out, you can search Google News to find out who's covered us.

Weather report

Hmmm. Things are looking cloudy for the 20th. Keep your fingers crossed and hope for clear skies.


Monday, October 15, 2007

Thanks to volunteers, press update

Thanks so much to all the great folks who joined us yesterday on Peter’s vegetable oil-fueled bus to help spread the word about LOSF! Pictured: Friends of the Urban Forest Executive Director Kelly Quirke and his daughter Calliope hand out Lights Out SF info and free compact fluorescent light bulbs in Noe Valley.

Recent Press: Thanks to Scott Beale from Laughing Squid for including us in his Blog and to Kevin, who included us in SF City Dish.

Eater SF wrote about Saturday’s candle light dinners, and The Examiner covered our Bus Tour.

An interview with our own Brian Scott aired this weekend on Sierra Club Radio. Listen here, and an interview with Nate also aired on NPR’s Weekend Edition Saturday.

Also, watch for interviews with Nate and Brian on tonight’s news! ABC7News, CBS 5, and NBC Channel 11 all came into our office today to inquire about Lights Out.

For an updated list of news, stayed tuned to our website.

A post for Blog Action Day

In honor of Blog Action Day, I'd like to point out an article the SF Chronicle ran on Sunday. Cities throughout California are setting up solar-powered parking lots. According to the Chronicle, “[a]lthough the demand for electricity peaks on days when the sun shines brightest, solar power accounts for less than 1 percent of California's total electricity supply”. Wouldn’t it be great to harness more energy from this life-giving star at the center of our solar system? For more information, read “Solar-powered parking lots”.

Bloggers Unite - Blog Action Day

Friday, October 12, 2007

Help us out and have fun too!

This Sunday, join LOSF and the Teacher with the Bus get a free ride on the coolest buses in town and help promote energy conservation at the same time!

We need to spread the word about October 20th to everyone in San Francisco. That's where you come in. On this Sunday, October 14th at 10:30AM the plan is to transport friends and volunteers all over the city in both of Peter's veggie-oil buses in order to pass out CFLs and info, and paint the city with posters. You are all invited to join us. Please pass along the info below to your friends. We'll meet at the LOSF office at 2548 Mission St. (between 21st & 22nd), where there will be a brief orientation. Afterward, we'll head out to see how much of the city we can cover. If you'd like to attend please RSVP to
by the end of the day October 13th.

You may stay as long as you like, but there will be occasional drop-offs at public transportation stations if you'd like to leave before we stop. There will be music and water provided, but please feel free to bring food and libations. If you choose to drink, we trust you will do so responsibly, as you will be representing LOSF. This is a fun opportunity to combine fun and activism. We hope to see you this Sunday! Again, if you'd like to attend please RSVP to

Also, reserve between 5-9pm on October 20th in Dolores Park for a LOSF celebration with DJ Mancub, Beatropilis & a surprise unamplifed contributor while the lights are out!

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Eco news

According to the New Economics Foundation, "[t]he world moved into 'ecological overdraft' on Saturday, the point at which human consumption exceeds the ability of the earth to sustain it in any year and goes into the red". While it is not definite that this is the case, the article "World moves into the ecological red" includes some very scary and eye-opening facts. This one struck me as particularly poignant:

"If everyone in the world had the same consumption rates as in the United States it would take 5.3 planet earths to support them, NEF said, noting that the figure was 3.1 for France and Britain, 3.0 for Spain, 2.5 for Germany and 2.4 for Japan."

Thank you to Graham, who wrote in to alert us of an article entitled "Is light pollution killing out birds?" which states:

"Recent research has shown a reduction in the populations of moths, spiders, sparrows and amphibians, supporting the case for light pollution being considered a threat to the environment as well as to astronomers - who find the glare interfering with their observations - and householders - who complain of the visual intrusion caused by security lights and insensitive street lighting."

Visit to download a PDF of the entire article.

Just some more food for thought.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Green Resources

It's been a while since I've posted something other than event notices and media mentions. Today I'd like to take a moment to direct you all toward a few green resources.

NRDC has a Green Living Toolkit, where you will find a comprehensive list of well-written guides, tips, and other resources that will help you live a more sustainable lifestyle.

Treehugger also has a good collection of Go Green Guides, which include everything from "How to Green Your Community" to "How to Green Your Pet."

And, even more importantly, news about pending legislation and global warming appears every day. According to an AP writeup by H. Josef Hebert, last week the EPA "examined the long-term impact of three climate change bills being considered in the Senate, each of which would cap carbon dioxide emissions from cars, industry and power plants with an goal of reducing greenhouse gas releases by 60 to 65 percent by mid-century". For the entire article, read "EPA: Competing Bills Achieve Same Goal".

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Today's press

Today (actually, tomorrow...) we were featured in The Sydney Morning Herald.

We were also reviewed on Yelp!.

Hop on board the bus with us again this Sunday!

We'll be at it again this Sunday, October 14th. Our friend Peter, the Teacher with the Bus has graciously offered not one, but BOTH of his buses for us to use this Sunday. His buses are big, grey, and hard to miss.

This time we plan to fill both of Peter's buses with friends and volunteers in order to pass out CFLs and info, and paint the city with our posters. We’ll start at our office in the Mission, and then head out. It's a blast, so
e-mail us
and join in. Or, track us down and get your FREE energy-efficient light bulb!

Thank to all those who supported us by coming to Medjool!

It was great seeing you all on Medjool's Sky Terrace last night! Many thanks to Gus for offering up his space.

Monday, October 8, 2007

Thanks again to our Castro St. fair volunteers!

A big thank you to Richard, Eileen, and Jenna who volunteered with us at the Castro St. Fair on Sunday. What a great day! We distributed over 500 CFLs, along with lots of brochures and posters.

Do you want to help us out this weekend? We will be at Oktoberfest at the Fort Mason Center on Saturday and on Sunday we will continuing our famous bus tour around the city. Drop us a line at and let us know if you can give us a hand!

LOSF (and Nate) on "Living on Earth"; today's blog shout-out

Nate had the opportunity to talk about LOSF on NPR's "Living On Earth", which aired this weekend. I think the segment turned out well. Check it out.

Thanks go to Michael and Scott, for including us in their greenerImpact blog.

Fun times on the bus, success at the Castro St. Fair, and more fun times at Medjool tonight!

Thanks to all those who joined us yesterday on Peter's bus to help us spread the word about LOSF!

Brendan reported that tabling at Castro St. Fair was a success. Approximately 500 CFLs distributed, along with lots of brochures and posters. Lots of comments to the effect of "Yeah, I've heard about you guys..." Go Brendan!

Also, please join us tonight at 6:30pm at Medjool from 6:30-9:30pm. Medjool is located at 2522 Mission St.--the LOSF team will be on the rooftop. We're looking forward to seeing you all there.

Friday, October 5, 2007

PG&E plans to give away 1 million CFLs

Yesterday the Lights Out team visited the Energy Star bus at Safeway in the Marina. PG&E was present there as well, and they announced that they have made a deal with Safeway to sell CFLs at a discount as well. PG&E also plans to give away 1 million energy efficient light bulbs. PG&E estimates over the lifetime of the 1 million bulbs - if they're installed in California homes - will save more 400,000 megawatts of electricity and eliminate 200,000 tons of greenhouse gases.

Thank you to Michael, for adding us to his greenerImpact blog.

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Today's Blog Mentions

Thanks to Hallie McClave, who wrote about us for Flex Your Power’s e-Newswire and Blog Archives.

Repell-em Blog, Heart of Green, and mom go green also blogged about us today. Thanks, fellow bloggers, for helping us spread the word!

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

More green publicity

Today we made it into The Daily Green, as well as TreeHugger.

And more to come, I'm sure!

Turn Off The Lights

How much energy do your appliances use?

A friend asked me if even her flat iron uses electricity if it's plugged in, but not in use. While I was unable to find out about flat irons, I found a helpful website that explains electricity usage. Generally speaking, anything with a display will draw a charge even if it is off. Appliances that run off transformers also draw a charge. Learn more.

Reminder: Fundraiser at Medjool on Monday, October 8th

Here's the Evite.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Lights Out hits the streets!

Keep an eye out for us around the city this Sunday, October 7th. Our friend Peter, the Teacher with the Bus has graciously offered not one, but BOTH of his veggie oil-fueled buses for us to use to spread the word about LOSF.

Our plan is to transport friends and volunteers in order to pass out CFLs and info, and paint the city with our posters. We’ll start at our office in the Mission, and then head toward the Haight and Golden Gate Park. Track us down and get your FREE energy-efficient light bulb! If you miss us this weekend, we will also be out and about on Sunday, October 14th.

More info to come…

Lights Out on TV!

Nate appeared today on national news! Check him out on Fox News.

Inhabitat has also featured us on their website.

Monday, October 1, 2007

Lights Out America!

We’re excited to announce the launch of our nationwide effort. For more information, stay tuned to

Rolling right along...

According to PG&E, by handing out 100K lightbulbs we will prevent the release of 18,600 tons of green house gases into the air. This is equal to the removal of 2,600 cars off the road permanently!

In other news, MSNBC featured the AP article about LOSF.

The Sydney Morning Herald Sydney Morning Herald reprinted the LA Times write-up about Nate and LOSF.

Over the past few days, Lights Out LA appeared in several papers and online publications. For more info, please visit

For an interesting look at the “life cycle” of a white board marker and it’s impact on the earth, have a look at Cradle to Grave.

Thanks to a friend, I’m now aware of a low-energy Google search engine. Check it out.

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Life at Lights Out

Here's a taste of life in the Lights Out office:

Nate and Peter get serious...

More images to come!

Friday, September 28, 2007

The lights may be going out in and around LA...

Our first Lights Out LA article went to print! We were featured today in the San Gabriel Valley Tribune. The article has also been reposted in the Los Angeles Daily News, Pasadena Star-News, San Bernardino Sun, and the Whittier Daily News.

Meet LOSF on October 8th at Medjool

We’re having another fundraiser! Please join us from 6:30-9:30pm on Monday, October 8th at Medjool. Medjool is located at 2522 Mission Street, between 21st and 22nd.

People want to do something about climate change. Period.


I came across this amazing study recently published by Gallup and Yale. It shows what I think we already know, which is, people are concerned about climate change and increasingly want to do something about it.


  • 72% are either ‘Completely Convinced’ or ‘Mostly Convinced’ that “global warming is happening”.
  • 69% are convinced that Global Warming is caused either completely or partially by human activities. (57% believe that human activities are directly to blame.)
  • 67% Strongly favor “Requiring automakers to increase the fuel efficiency of cars, trucks, and SUVs to 35 miles per gallon, even if it meant a new car would cost up to $500 more to buy.” An additional 12% “somewhat favor” this step.
  • 82% either ’strongly favor’ or ’somewhat favor’ “Requiring electric utilities to produce at least 20% of their electricity from wind, solar, or other renewable energy sources, even if it cost the average household an extra $100 a year.”

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Blog Action Day

Today we joined Blog Action Day. Bloggers everywhere will join together on October 15th to spread the word about way in which we can help the environment. Each blogger will address environmental issues by writing a post relating to their own topic. Check it out!

Bloggers Unite - Blog Action Day

Stop Your Junk Mail and Learn About Green Jobs for All

Green for All is a campaign dedicated to “harness[ing] the growing power of the green economic revolution to fight the war on poverty.” They intend to secure training for thousands of workers for the green job market in order to create job opportunities for impoverished urban community members in cities such as Baltimore, Detroit, Oakland, and New Orleans. To learn more, or to get involved, visit their website.

According to , over 100 million trees are cut down each year to print junk mail. This month, New American Dream: Carbon Conscious Consumer is asking folks to remove themselves from mail junk lists in order to save paper. New American Dream is a site directed toward encouraging individuals to adopt “climate-friendly daily habits”. You can also sign up at website to stop receiving junk mail.

MORE PRESS: The Boston Globe featured the article John M. Glionna wrote about Nate and Lights Out in the Los Angeles Times

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Welcome new supporters!!!

A very special welcome goes out to two of our new supporters: the Environmental Law Society at Golden Gate University School of Law and the Bay Area chapter of the American Red Cross!

The Environmental Law Society (ELS) will be distributing CFLs and LOSF promotional material to the students and faculty at Golden Gate University starting next week. A big thank you to Lucas Williams, ELS president, for helping to lead the effort!

Another big thank you goes out to Brianna Warren, AmeriCorps Preparadness Specialist at the Bay Area chapter of the American Red Cross. Brianna and several of her co-workers at the American Red Cross will be out in force in San Francisco on Friday, October 19th (the day before LOSF) distributing CFLs and spreading the word about LOSF. Friday will be a HUGE outreach day for LOSF. I am thrilled that the American Red Cross will be out "hitting the streets" with us on that day!

Is your company or business interested in being a sponsor or supporter? Drop Brendan an e-mail at

Seattle's Climate Action

While San Francisco is doing an exemplary job of implementing “green” programs, we can always learn from other cities. Seattle is also working toward a sustainable future. Learn more about what they’re doing in the Northwest by reading “It takes a city to limit greenhouse gases”.

Interested in a Lights Out SF t-shirt or tote?

Visit our Cafepress store:

Support This Site

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

More CLF Info

We have continued receiving emails from individuals concerned with the potential dangers of disposing of CFLs. We appreciate your concern, and most definitely advocate safe and proper disposal. For more information, read 5 Ways to Recycle a CFL. You might also find How to live with CFLs a helpful resource.

Black Balloons and Sea Level Rise

A new friend tipped me off to an interesting visual. Black Balloons: making CO2 real provides an interesting visualization of household greenhouse gas emissions. Yet another reason we need to conserve energy.

If those black balloons aren’t scary enough, watch ABCs Fear of Rising Waters video. For more information, read Architecture2030’s Coastal Impact Study: Nation Under Siege.

Also, uur web host put us on their website. Check it out--we’re at the bottom of the page. Thanks AISO!

Monday, September 24, 2007

Lights Out--for the birds?

Every spring and fall, birds migrate along the Pacific Flyway through the San Francisco Bay Area. Several migratory bird species are threatened or endangered; needing all the help they can get along their journey. Some birds fly long distances, between Alaska or Canada in North America and Patagonia in South America.

The birds that migrate at night rely upon the stars and moon for navigation. Studies indicate that artificial light disorients birds, especially the many birds that migrate at night.

If you are interested in volunteering for "lights out for birds," please email Golden Gate Audubon's Conservation Committee at You can also learn more about protecting Bay Area resident and migratory birds at

More press...

We’ve been featured on ECOFRIENDS weblog.

Also, stay tuned to our Lights Out America webpage for details about a national event in March 2008.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Help promote LOSF by adding a banner to your website!

The Associated Press sent out this LOSF press release today. We’re very pleased to be getting recognition on the national level!

Please help us spread the word by posting one of our great banners on your website, MySpace page, or blog. Here's just one of the three you can download:


Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Another big day!

Great news. Today we were featured in both the SF Chronicle and the LA Times. Nate’s got some priceless quotes, and LOSF received some great publicity!

CalTrans has just confirmed that the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge will turn off lights. The Transamerica Pyramid has agreed to turn off lights as well.

Thanks also to Coalition of San Francisco Neighborhoods which moved to endorse us last night.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Some Notes on Green Building

Edward Mazria, keynote speaker at both West Coast Green, and Climate All Stars Conference, is the founder of Architecture 2030. Mazria established his non-profit organization in response to the climate crisis. Architecture 2030 hopes “to achieve a dramatic reduction in the global-warming-causing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions of the Building Sector by changing the way buildings and developments are planned, designed and constructed”. They’ve got a great vision, and their website is an excellent resource.

Earthship Biotecture, a New Mexico-grown phenomenon, is an interesting example of sustainable architecture. These eco-friendly living spaces are made using recycled materials. They also collect water from rain and snow, and use solar and wind power as an energy sources. Some are humble, and others are works of art.

Jay Shafer, creator of Tumbleweed Houses, presents another alternative to the average home. Shafer lives in a home of just 100 square feet in size, and designs and builds Tiny Houses as well. My favorite is the Weebee.

On another sustainability note, I came across this article about PG&E. In late July, the power company signed an agreement with Solel, which will provide customers with 553 megawatts of solar power when the Mojave Solar Park plant is completed in 2011.

Down to a Science

Thanks to Eric Case, Lights Out SF made it into Blogs of Note last week!

Upcoming event: Please join us this coming Monday, September 24th, for Science Café hosted by Down to a Science. Melissa Capria, SF Climate Action Coordinator, will be giving a talk entitled "Microclimate change: Global Warming and the Bay Area". LOSF will be on hand to pass out info about our October 20th event as well. Science Café will begin at 7pm, at 330 Ritch between 3rd & 4th Streets and Brannan & Townsend near AT&T Park.

Down to a Science (DtaS) is an ongoing Science Café, a casual forum where leading scientists discuss their research with the public. DtaS is held on the 3rd Tuesday of every month at a local San Francisco bar. No lectures. No technical jargon. Just food, drinks, and science!

Down to a Science was created to start a civic discourse through scientific dialogue with a focus on science here in the Bay Area. Topics range from local climate change to fertility to earthquakes. You'll never know what you'll learn about next!

In addition, DtaS features an entertaining science blog with content related to the topics.

Stay tuned this week for information about sustainable building and renewable power sources…there are too many interesting things to write about in just one sitting!

Monday, September 17, 2007


Check out the Boing Boing page here.

Thanks to Yahoo!, we now have 10,000 CFLs to begin handing out!

Golden Gate Bridge, Alcatraz Turning Lights Out

Exciting we announced that the Golden Gate Bridge, Alcatraz Island, City Hall and others are joining us and in turning off lights. And...our good friend Xeni just Boing Boing(ed) us!

Here's the press release (sorry a little long).

Lights Out San Francisco Invites City to Turn Off Lights on October 20th

from 8:00-9:00 P.M.; Install One Energy-Efficient Light Bulb to Save Energy

Event Gaining Momentum with San Francisco City Hall, Golden Gate Bridge, Alcatraz and Local Businesses to Darken Facilities in Support

SAN FRANCISCO (September 17, 2007) – Lights Out San Francisco, a community-based non-profit organization dedicated to energy conservation, announced today its inaugural citywide energy savings event ( On Saturday, October 20 between 8:00 and 9:00 p.m., San Francisco residents and businesses are invited to turn off non-essential lights for one hour and install one energy-efficient light bulb in an effort to raise awareness about energy conservation and to reduce carbon emissions into the air.

“Lights Out San Francisco is an innovative way to incorporate energy conservation into our daily lives,” said Mayor Gavin Newsom. “This is an opportunity to fundamentally change the way people think about their energy consumption.”

This first-ever U.S. public call-to-action will be highlighted by the participation of some of San Francisco’s most notable landmarks. The Golden Gate Bridge will extinguish lights on its main towers (roadway lighting will remain on for safety); City Hall and other city buildings will turn off lights; the Golden Gate National Parks Alcatraz Island will also turn off lights.

“San Francisco is the ideal place to launch this energy conservation event because of the city’s strong commitment to environmental awareness and activism,” said Nate Tyler, founder and executive director of Lights Out San Francisco. “We’re amazed by the positive reception we’ve received, and we hope San Franciscans will create a model for energy awareness that can be adopted nationwide.”

Free, energy-efficient light bulbs, or compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs), will be distributed throughout the city during the months of September and October to provide resources for continued energy-saving. Bulbs will be donated by PG&E and Yahoo!.

“The goal of this program is to increase public awareness about simple energy conservation practices such as using energy-efficient light bulbs, taking public transportation, and unplugging appliances when idle – all viable ways to reduce greenhouse gas emissions,” said San Francisco Supervisor Jake McGoldrick.

The San Francisco Restaurant Association is organizing candlelight dinners throughout the city. Neighborhood coalitions are recruiting residents to turn off lights and host local celebrations. The list of supporters continues to grow. For more information, visit

It is estimated that one hour of energy conservation in San Francisco could save as much as 10 percent of the energy consumed on a Saturday night. A similar event recently took place in Sydney, Australia where by turning out the lights for one hour, 2.2 million participants conserved 24.86 tons of carbon dioxide that would have normally been released -- an amount of energy equivalent to removing 48,613 cars from the road for one hour.

After its San Francisco launch, Lights Out San Francisco plans to take its energy-conservation mission nationwide with Lights Out America in March 2008. The organization hopes to link its efforts with other cities around the world, including Sydney, London and others.

Demonstrating their commitment to energy conservation and environmental awareness are Lights Out San Francisco sponsors eSurance, Integrated Archive Systems, and Safeway.

Community supporters include: California Interfaith Power and Light, California League of Conservation Voters, Flex Your Power, Gap Inc., Golden Gate Restaurant Association, The International Dark-Sky Association, Neighborhood Parks Council, PG&E, Rainforest Action Network, SF Chamber of Commerce, SF Climate Challenge,, San Francisco Department of the Environment, San Francisco Parks Trust, Sports Basement, Teacher With the Bus, Tides Center, Working Assets Wireless, and Yahoo!.

A citywide celebration will be held at Dolores Park on Saturday, October 20 between 5:30 p.m. and 9:00 p.m., where San Franciscans can come together to enjoy free live music ranging from local bands and DJs to Opera in the Dark.

Volunteers interested in becoming more involved with the Lights Out San Francisco can sign up to join the field campaign by contacting For further information on how to get involved, or to make a donation to Lights Out San Francisco, please visit

# # #

Friday, September 14, 2007

Thanks to all who came to Pete's!

Many thanks to the great folks who attended our Happy Hour at Pete's Tavern last night! We greatly appreciate your donations. We'll be hosting several more fundraising events before October 20th, so stay posted. Online donations are also gratefully accepted.


Also, we were mentioned in the San Francisco Chronicle. Check out their Energy waste focus of 'Lights Out' event article.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Small Things Are Important

Our friends over at Grist magazine have an amazing article up today called The power of voluntary actions.

Read it. Lot's of great perspective on how important it is for people to do small things to make change happen on a larger scale.


Tuesday, September 11, 2007

New Supporters, Upcoming "Green" Events

The SF Neighborhood Parks Council and San Francisco Parks Trust have both signed on as Supporters. Many thanks!

Festivals are a great way to learn more and to learn more and become involved in conservation activism. Two big eco events are taking place next week. West Coast Green is a residential green building conference with speakers, architects, builders, and green builder materials suppliers.

The Climate All Stars Conference, which takes place next Friday, September 21, will provide a venue for leaders, businesses, and individuals to learn practical ways to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and work together toward more sustainable living.

October 19-21 (just in time for Lights Out!), the annual Bioneers Conference will take place. The Conference is a forum for learning about and exchanging ideas and solutions, and networking with "visionary thinkers and doers from wildly varied fields, cultures and walks of life".

In November, The San Francisco Green Festival takes place at the San Francisco Concourse Exhibition Center. The Green Festival is a “three-day party with a purpose” featuring green businesses, speakers, workshops, live music, and organic food and beverages.

If you have the time, check out one or more of them!

Don't forget to join us at Pete's Tavern on Thursday night!

Hello everyone! This is Brendan writing from the LOSF office in the Mission. Just wanted to remind everyone that LOSF is hosting a great happy hour event at Pete's Tavern this Thursday from 5:00 PM to 9:00 PM. We want to share the enthusiasm about LOSF and tell you how you can do your part!

Pete's will be offering us drink and food specials, and they're really excited to help spread the word about Lights Out San Francisco . Come early, come late...we'll be there!

Pete's Tavern is located at 128 King St. in San Francisco...right near the ballpark! E-mail me at if you have any questions. Thanks!

Friday, September 7, 2007

Volunteers needed for LOSF outreach ASAP!

Hello! This is Brendan and Julia writing from the LOSF office here in the Mission. We are launching our outreach efforts starting next week and we need your help! We are looking for some active and energetic volunteers to assist us in getting our message out! Our volunteers will be “out and about” in communities throughout San Francisco spreading our message and distributing bulbs to city residents. More specifically, volunteers will be taking part in tabling sessions during the lunch hour/evening communte between Monday and Friday and also on the weekends at different events. At these sessions, volunteers will distribute literature, answer questions about LOSF from interested citizens, and assist in the distribution of CFL bulbs.

Also, we have some great INTERSHIP OPPORTUNITIES available with LOSF. See the following position description:

"Lights Out San Francisco is offering opportunities to experience and develop skills within a fun and considerate environment over the next six weeks where multi-tasking and creative solutions are encouraged. This position is the primary point in contact for the public and will have various responsibilities including: formulating strategy, community outreach, event planning, tabling, distributing light bulbs, and volunteer coordinating. An ideal candidate will be motivated and have a positive attitude. A professional phone manner and a sense of humor are also important."

Please contact either of us if you are interested in volunteering or interning! Thanks!!!



Thursday, September 6, 2007

Green Drinks, LOSF Happy Hour, Avaaz Petition

Today I’m writing from our new office (!). The LOSF team is getting ready to head over to Green Drinks at Varnish this evening (see Monday’s post).

We’ve got another event coming up one week from today—Happy Hour at Pete’s Tavern. They're offering us drink and food specials, and they're really excited to help Lights Out SF move this exciting plan forward. Stop by early (we’ll be there around 5pm), or stay 'til late. Suggested contribution - $20. Please pass along the Evite to anyone you think might be interested in attending. sent out an email alert requesting it’s member to sign a petition regarding the September 8-9 APEC Economic Leader summit. The petition states, “Petition To World Leaders: Climate change is the greatest threat facing our world today - and we are almost out of time to stop it. You must tackle this problem now, decisively and together. Start working toward a new global agreement this year. Set binding global targets for emissions to avert catastrophic climate change. Take bold action immediately - and we will join our efforts with yours”. Check out the petition , and add your name to the list if you support their cause.

The team, the new office

Here we are (from left to right) Rachel Ray, Brendan Devlin, Julia Sullivan.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

New Office, Come Help Us!

We are very excited by the opening of our new office. We are located at 2548 Mission St. Between 21st and 22nd on Mission. Come down and give us a hand with organizing the event. We need lots of help tabling around the city, contacting businesses, putting up posters and distributing CFL's. E-mail us at if you have any questions or just stop by. Maybe call first to see if we are in... 415-643-5673.

Monday, September 3, 2007

Green Drinks this Thursday

Join us at Varnish (77 Natoma, near 2nd St) for Green Drinks this Thursday, September 6th at 6pm. We'll be available to discuss Lights Out and answer your questions. We'd love to see you there!

Friday, August 31, 2007

More publicity, and some great website updates founder Laurie David sent info on LOSF to 11th Hour Action. We are now featured in their Community News!

We’re making progress with the San Francisco Opera and the San Francisco Symphony. Our hope is to have performers from both at our celebrations.

Check out our updated Supporters and FAQ pages.

Many thanks to our new supporters! They are: The California League of Conservation Voters, Gap Inc., Internation Dark Sky Association, Sports Basement, and Working Assets.

Also, LOSF wants to thank Tides Center for taking us on as a project.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Lights Out (insert your city's name here)

After a fruitful Steering Committee meeting yesterday, we’re moving full-steam ahead. We’ve got a new office space, and are about to print posters, brochures, and handouts. Keep an eye out for our info in storefronts and restaurants. Special thanks to Nick Rubenstein and Mabel Liang for all their amazing design work!

Pete’s Tavern has graciously offered their space for us to host a fundraiser. Please join us there from 5-8pm on September 13, and contribute to a great cause!

We’re getting noticed on the national level! We were featured in the August 29, 2007 newsletter.

We would like to extend our appreciation to the folks around the world who have expressed interest in starting a Lights Out movement in their own cities. We truly appreciate your support! Right now, we need to focus our energy on LOSF, but would like to move on to other cities after out project is done. It’s a short time frame for this year, but please turn your lights out on Oct. 20 in solidarity. We have had a lot of success with Lights Out San Francisco, and our hope is to move the event national with Lights Out America. Tentatively we are looking at March for a national event. Sign up for the SF event and we will keep you informed about the national effort and will work with you on coordinating your area. Please stay tuned to our website and this blog for more information.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Dark skies are a good thing.

More great news. The International Dark Sky Association (IDA) has joined us as a supporter! Their mission is “to preserve and protect the nighttime environment and our heritage of dark skies through quality outdoor lighting.” I'm looking forward to seeing some stars on October 20th!

Here’s some more green news: "Existing technologies combined with common sense design can increase energy efficiency by 35 percent and reduce heating costs by 80 percent for the average building in industrialized markets," says United Technologies Corporation Chairman and Chief Executive George David. See Global Survey Shows "Green" Construction Costs Dramatically Lower Than Believed for the whole story.

Monday, August 27, 2007

CFL Info

Today I came across a number of interesting pieces of information about CFLs.

Did you know that if every household in California replaced just one regular bulb with a CFL, it would be about the same as removing 85,000 cars from our state’s roads for one year? The CA Energy Quest website has more Illuminating facts about fluorescent bulbs.

How do CFLs compare to normal light bulbs? Find out at HowStuffWorks.

The Integrated Waste Management Board provides information about disposing of CFLs. Learn more from the CIWMB website.

More info to come.

Friday, August 24, 2007

A great finish to another productive week

Today’s been a big day for LOSF! We are now sponsored by Safeway, which will also be helping us distribute information in their stores.

The Golden Gate Bridge Board officially adopted our resolution today. The Bridge will be turning off lights on October 20th in support of LOSF!

A little bird also told me that there may be a Lights Out celebration in Dolores Park on October 20th. Stay tuned for more info...

Thursday, August 23, 2007

In other news...

We came across this article The Economist, which addresses a the complexities of recycling. The author concludes that recycling is indeed worth the effort, but there are improvements to be made in the system.

Yesterday, the SF Chronicle shared some good news: Six Western states and parts of Canada join to cut greenhouse gases.

Is radio the new wave in light bulbs? Check out “A light bulb powered by radio waves”, which was posted today to CNET’s News Blog.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Volunteermatch, Flex Your Power, Power Surges, and Ts

We're working hard to get more folks involved in our project. We have a listing on
[VolunteerMatch - Where Volunteering Begins.]
and would love interested parties to sign up and help with information and CFL distribution.

This morning Nate and I met with Flex Your Power to discuss publicity and exchange ideas. They're a great resource, and we're looking forward to collaborating with them.

I received an email today from a San Francisco resident concerned with the possible occurrence of a power surge when lights are turned back on at 9pm the night of the event. Earth Hour in Sydney (the event which inspired ours) didn't experience a surge when their lights went back on. We've spoken with PG & E, and they don't anticipate a surge here either.

Thanks to Nick Rubenstein, we're finalizing our poster and t-shirt designs. Nick's come up with some fantastic images!

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Good things are happening!

We've been so busy brainstorming, organizing, and fundraising that we haven't had time to write. Now we're back, and we got some great news to share!

During the week of August 6th we were officially endorsed by the San Francisco Department of the Environment and featured in the Examiner.

We are now sponsored by both Esurance and Integrated Archive Systems. Yesterday, we secured support from the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition and California Interfaith Power and Light. Other supporters include Flex Your Power, the Golden Gate Restaurant Association, PG&E, SF Climate Challenge, Teacher With the Bus, Rainforest Action Network, and Yahoo!.

We’re making great progress with donations of compact flourescent light bulbs (CFLs). PG&E has donated thousands of bulbs for us to distribute for free throughout San Francisco. We’re aware that there is some controversy over the danger of mercury found in CFLs. According Helen Suh MacIntosh, a professor in environmental health at Harvard University, CFLs are safe. You can read a summary on the issue so you can make your own determination. More information on CFLs can also be found on the Sierra Club website.

Currently, we’re working on reaching out to public and private schools from the elementary to collegiate levels in hopes of educating students about energy conservation and promoting our event. If you’d like to get your school involved, send us an e-mail at

Friday, July 27, 2007

First Staff Person Today

Great news. Rachel Ray is helping full time. Thank god.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Week One, What We Did

What a week it has been. Here's what we've done.
- Edited and posted the letter to the web.
- Started to make inroads with the Mayor's office. Calls are being made and we're hoping to have something set up next week.
- Spoke briefly with the SF Dept. of Environment. Very nice people there. Share some critical information about how much energy has been saved over the years.
- Working with friends to make a connection at PG&E.
- Talking to a variety of companies about sponsorship opportunities.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

What I learned in Sydney

Two weeks ago I was traveling in Sydney Australia. To my surprise one Saturday night, the entire city, including the restaurant where I was eating, turned the lights out. I learned later that this was all part of an energy savings event called Earth Hour.

To me, this was an extraordinarily simple and effective way for the Sydney community to do something concrete about global warming and to educating the public about energy issues. Also...I loved eating in the dark and it was fun to watch all the people come out of their houses and businesses with candles to talk to each other. Lots of community building happening.

When I got back home to the San Francisco, I decided I wanted to do something similar in my city and possibly throughout the nation. So, I called a few friends and started Lights Out San Francisco.

Now...we're working together to find a way to make our goal a reality. Since we're a community-based organization, we figured we should let the public know what's going on. Stay tuned to this blog for updates on our progress and notes on who we've met along the way.