By Angela Dorizas

SYDNEY: As cities across the globe switch off their lights from 8pm tomorrow night, Sharp Australia will temporarily pull the plug on its illuminated adverting sign in North Sydney.

Sharp has joined the worldwide Earth Hour initiative to take a stand against global warming and promote the company’s “green” strategy, Sharp deputy managing director, Denis Kerr, told Current.

“As a responsible company it is essential to support and become involved with endeavours which aim to counteract global warming. Earth Hour will not solve all environmental problems but it makes the global community stand up and take notice.”

Sharp’s “eco-friendly” 18-metre by 3-metre sign consumes 65 per cent less energy through efficient LED lighting. According to Kerr, this is just one example of the company’s commitment to its “Super Green Strategy.” The Sharp LCD plant in Kameyama, Japan is another.

“With the construction of our second Kameyama plant, we now generate one third of the total electricity used in the factory,” Kerr said.

“This is achieved by employing a dispersed power system incorporating one of the world’s largest solar power generation systems. Even though vast quantities of water are required in producing LCD panels, 100 per cent of the water expelled by the factory is recycled.”

Excess heat from waste water generates 26,400 kW of power, while the plants’ solar power generator provides 5,150 kW of energy. Sharp has also incorporated Japan’s largest fuel cell with a 1,000 kW capacity to cut CO2 emissions by 40 per cent.

This week the company also unveiled its plan to produce the world’s largest solar cell plant in Sakai, western Japan. The project to expand solar cell production will cost $US729 million and is expected to be complete by 2010.

“All of these energy reducing and eco-friendly attributes reflect Sharp’s global positioning of reducing greenhouse gases and working towards more environmentally friendly outcomes,” Kerr said.

The Earth Hour movement was created in 2007 to raise awareness about the effects of global warming. For more information go to