Sydney, Australia – First President of Armenia Levon Ter-Petrosyan was awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award by Earth Hour Foundation. Earth Hour is a global event organized by WWF (World Wildlife Fund) as a desperate attempt to please the Earth after centuries of careless pollution, and is held on the last Saturday of March annually, asking lazy-ass households and businesses to turn off their electricity for one hour to raise awareness towards the need to take action on climate change and also to simulate at least some kind of action. Though Earth Hour was conceived by WWF and The Sydney Morning Herald in 2007, when 2.2 million residents of Sydney participated by turning off all electricity, Levon Ter-Petrosyan showed his environmental activism way back in early 1990s.
“We are here today to honor a visionary, a man who started to care about our planet long before all of us were mature enough to see how careless use of electricity is destroying our beloved planet. He was the first to push the button and stop 3 millions of Armenians from extravagant carefree use of electric appliances, like fridges, light bulbs, televisions or heating devices during winter time” was the opening speech of Earth Hour Foundation CEO Gerhard Carter.
He went on telling that Armenia was environmentally cautious enough to have not just Earth Hours but Earth Years, spending about 7 years electricity free and essentially contributing to ecology preservation even more than superpowers like the USA, Russia or China.
With sentimental tears in his eyes and a subtle tremble in his voice Armenia’s first President started his speech passionately: “I knew that time would come and people would start understanding what I was doing years ago. At the time everyone thought that I was just an asshole, who enjoyed switching the electricity off. There were many versions on why I was doing that, some said I was selling electricity to other countries, others said I simply wanted to be the only person in the republic who watched soap opera called “Santa Barbara” every day. Today I can look into everyone’s eyes and say that the only thing I cared about at the time was our dear Mother Earth. I call all world leaders to study Armenia’s success story and try their best to save our planet. Because every light bulb that is turned off matters, every dark alley matters, every cold apartment is a step towards saving our children’s future!!!”
Opposition during Levon Ter-Petrosyan regime and a ruling party today Republican Party of Armenia (RPA) still thinks Ter-Petrosyan had a hidden agenda in 90s. Says Eduard Sharmazanov, RPA spokesman: “Anyone with a brain realizes that Ter-Petrosyan never cared for environment, he was a “Santa Barbara” fan, a fanatic if you want. He was the only person in the whole country to watch every episode every day, and he enjoyed telling others who C.C. was going to marry, why Cruz broke up with Eden, who was screwing with Gina, it was his perverted source of pleasure. Here’s a simple proof: the electricity crisis in Armenia started just when “Santa Barbara” started, and guess when it ended? Exactly! Exactly when “Santa Barbara” ended. Need I say more?”
Having finished his speech Levon Ter-Petrosyan switched off the lights in the hall and left with an award in one hand and a candle in the other. As for the rest of Armenia they shut the electricity down for only one hour, but did it with a sense of pride, knowing how much every other person on Earth owes them.