Alberta’s capital city saw a 5.2 per cent drop in power consumption during Earth Hour Saturday — better than the 1.5 per cent increase seen during the event last year, said Epcor.

The Edmonton-based power company studied the hour between 8:30 and 9:30 p.m. Saturday, and compared it to power-consumption figures that were seen in that same hour the week before.

Epcor spokeswomen Michelle St-Amand said the city’s power consumption during Earth Hour was 17,351-megawatt hours. That’s down from the 18,301-megawatt hours that was seen in the previous week.

“This could have been influenced by conservation efforts. However, it is normal to see a variance by plus or minus 10 per cent in any given hour of power consumption,” St-Amand said.

Coun. Don Iveson said more people and businesses in Edmonton are just beginning to buy into the importance of energy conservation.

“It’s a bigger drop than last year and it seems like a lot more people were observing Earth Hour than last year,” said Iveson.

Calgary’s power consumption dropped by a marginal one per cent — slightly better than a 3.6 per cent spike it saw during Earth Hour in 2008, according to figures from Enmax.

More than 285 cities and municipalities across the country took part in the annual event Saturday.