March 25 marks Earth Hour, a day to unite and rally the world to do something positive for our planet. Participating in Earth Hour is easy, simply switch off your lights at 8:30pm for one hour! Yes, just one hour. It may not seem like much, but the magic happens when supporters in over 190 countries and territories all give an hour for our one home, creating the Biggest Hour for Earth. Learn more about Earth Hour, here.

There are plenty of ways to do good for the planet outside of Earth Hour as well. How about adding Meat-free Mondays to your diet, drinking your takeaway coffee from a keep cup or shopping sustainably by buying local or second hand? Every little bit counts! It's awesome to see that the city centre is filled with businesses championing sustainability and implementing epic eco-friendly practices - from restaurants going plastic-free to rooftop gardens, seabins and beehives on rooftops, read more about some of the awesome initiatives below. 

Try Meat-free Mondays at these restaurants & eateries

Purchase a reusable coffee cup at these locations

Buy local or second hand goods from these shops

Beekeeping on rooftops | Multiple locations 

Although not the most obvious, city rooftops are ideal for beekeeping, as trees and plants on streets and surrounding parks provide bees with an abundance of food. 

Several city centre hotels, including Rydges, Crowne Plaza, Sofitel, and Grand Millennium house bees up top and even utilise the honey for their guests! The Auckland Town Hall and Harbour Grounds also care for thriving beehives while the arena bees at Spark Arena make honey using nectar collected from the backstage garden. 

The living rooftop | Auckland Library 

Auckland Library is setting a sustainable example with their living 'green roof', which features more than 2000 native plants. This awesome addition increases biodiversity, reduces stormwater runoff, improves air quality, and protects the roof from solar damage. 

The Local Living Compost Hub | Viaduct Harbour

The Local Living Compost Hub by For the Love of Bees and New Zealand Box, located in the Viaduct Harbour, is Auckland's first large scale urban compost initiative. Hello Beasty, Headquarters, and Soul Bar & Bistro have all jumped onto the project, helping to decompose raw materials into a new form. For example, Soul Bar & Bistro has contributed their oyster shells, which are ground up and introduced to the compost, their rich mineral component being a valuable addition. 

Electric Van Auckland Fish Market

The electric van at Sanford and Sons Fishmonger | 22-32 Jellicoe Street 

Sandford and Sons Fishmonger, based in the heart of the Auckland Fish Market, uses a fully electric van to transport their local fresh fish orders with the lowest possible carbon footprint. The Sanford and Sons van is a first for New Zealand because not only is the engine electric, but the chiller is too, enabling the vehicle to transport up to 1000kgs of seafood at a time with no emissions. 

Viaduct Harbour Seabins

Viaduct Harbour for their sea cleaning Seabins! 

Viaduct Harbour is doing its part in maintaining a healthy marine environment with the help of three Seabins. The Seabins work around the clock to suck and trap rubbish and debris before they go out to sea, and an oil pad works to catch oil and fuels. Viaduct Harbour's first Seabin was installed in 2018, and it was also the first Seabin in the whole of New Zealand too! 


Image credit: Auckland Council, @aklcouncil

Aquatic Health in the Downtown Ferry Basin

To monitor aquatic health and help filter the seawater in the Downtown Ferry Basin, 38 seeded mussel lines (600 metres worth of living shellfish) have been attached to the underside of Te Wānanga - Quay Street's new public space. 


Lobby Lane

The Hotel Britomart for their 5 Green Star rating 

The Hotel Britomart is New Zealand’s first 5 Green Star Hotel, a peaceful retreat within the heart of the buzzing shopping and hospitality precinct. Every detail from paint finishes to taps, light fixtures and room amenities has been carefully thought through to ensure minimal negative environmental impact. The features of each room are warm and welcoming with natural timber finishes, the works of local ceramic artists, organic cotton sheets, and locally made skincare products. 


Sustainable Salons Initiative | Multiple locations 

Sustainable Salons is a social enterprise that helps its salon members reduce their impact on the planet and invest in local communities. Several city centre salons including, Loxy's Hair Boutique, Skintopia, Ryder Salon, The Face Place, and Mika Styles are doing their bit by taking part in this great initiative. 

More businesses championing sustainability

Last updated: 21 March 2023