Last Tuesday night (August 23rd), Tokyo Tower lit up for the first time since the March Tohoku Earthquake and Tsunami. The iconic orange tower had been operating at 50% capacity in order to conserve energy due to Japan’s decreased energy capacity. In order to lift the spirits of Tokyoites, TOKYO FM organized an event including celebrities such as AKB48, EXILE, AAA, and Koji Tsuruno to reilluminate Tokyo Tower to its full glory relying solely on manpower.
Over the course of four days, ten bicycles were pedaled by roughly 5,000 volunteers to generate 4,935W of energy. The result was nine xenon lamps lighting up the top half of Tokyo Tower for roughly 30 minutes. Several radio stations and television programs broadcasted the event live from under the tower.
“I felt the difficulty of generating energy firsthand. I’m compelled to double my conservation efforts,” one participant was quoted as stating.
Even though the illumination was temporary and only partial, it gave motivation and hope for full recovery from the disaster to the residents of Tokyo.