Monday, July 21, 2008

Lifestyle changes to mitigate climate change

Just looking at Greener Choices from the publishers of Consumer Reports.
1. Switch to green power -- did that.
2. Seal and insulate duct system -- I'm a renter. I use New York's infamous steam heat.
3. Drive a fuel-efficient car -- Got no car.
4. Replace an old hot water heater -- Renter!
5. Control heating temperatures -- I do this, which involves a lot of painful valve operation. See 'infamy' above under 'steam heat.'
6. Choose an energy-efficient central air conditioner -- I don't use an air conditioner. I'm thinking of changing that, though, at least for my bedroom. I'll try to get an efficient air conditioner, but that's really number 17.
7. Reduce driving speed and drive evenly -- ahhh, more on this below.
8. Control your hot water heater temperature -- Renter!
9. Tune up and maintain your car -- No Car!
10. Put your computer to sleep -- I turn 'em off.
11. Replace 5 regular bulbs with compact fluorescents -- Could do.
12. Carpool or telecommute to work -- Subway!
13. Control air conditioning temperatures -- No A/C!
14. Choose an energy-efficient washing machine -- My laundry is done by neighborhood Bulgarians
15. Combine errands or ride your bike instead of driving -- No Car!
16. Pump up your tires -- No Car!
17. Choose an energy-efficient room air conditioner -- No A/C!
18. Choose an energy-efficient refrigerator -- Renter! The unit I have is pretty well-rated, though.

OK. So, the checklist is pretty irrelevant to me. It's almost like they want us to urbanize, and I've already done it. All I really have left is to, when I drive, not drive like an asshole. But, I'm not sure I can do it.

Really, I leave 3 seconds of space in front of me and try to keep an even speed, signal and minimize lane changes, but it's hard to feel you're using time effectively when you're much under 80 miles per hour. Has it come to this? I really only drive once or twice a month. Maybe I'll try a trip at 65 mph and see how it goes.

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