Becoming a greener is not only your choices in purchasing but also level of consumption, even with friendly environmentally products. How you decrease consumption in every field of life will be an important point in preventing from a case that people act like the proverbial lemmings.
Here’s a couple of examples.
Run my car on LPG? Great, that means I can travel further and it will only cost me the same!
Need more power? That’s fine, we’ll just build another zillion wind farms!
This is a common mentality for most of us; saving in order to spend. An essential part of living a more earth friendly life is about less consumption. Even the wonderful wind turbines have to be manufactured and that type of manufacturing is not earth friendly.
A few years ago, I would have been sitting in an office powered by several 100 watt globes, looking at a 17″ CRT screen while typing this out. Aside from the screen, the computer would have been drawing at least 100 watts too. So that’s a total of 300 watts of energy consumption an hour. My electricity would also most likely have been derived from the burning of coal.
Nowadays, my office is lit by a 10 watt compact fluorescent globe and I run a laptop with a smaller screen that draws at best 90 watts per hour. Over a day, I save about 2 kilowatts of power and what electricity I do use is sourced by renewable means or offset; and I suffer no real discomfort as a result.
Having less of an impact on the environment doesn’t mean we must live like cavemen or forego all of modern life’s luxuries, but just to treat them as such – luxuries; something to be cherished and used sparingly. It certainly boosts appreciation of these things and helps us to want for less.
But, in terms of energy consumption overall, with all these new fangled low voltage requirement gadgets coming out these days, energy star ratings to guide us and far more efficient engines etc, surely we must be using less energy per person?
No chance; most reports from countries around the world about energy usage state it’s increasing. There’s more people using more energy, despite a small offset as a result of improved energy efficiency.
Governments are concerned that making huge changes in the way we go about our lives in order to preserve our environment will have a negative impact on our economies. Well, I think we’re caught between a rock and a hard place now; it’s too late for any soft option and that’s entirely our own fault – we’ve been too slow to act.
We have a distinct and urgent choice to make; the somewhat painful sacrifices now or face an even more excruciating pain the day when our ecosystems finally say no more.
Michael Bloch is the author and owner of Green Living Tips.com, an online resource powered by renewable energy offering a wide variety of earth friendly tips, green guides, advice and environment related news to help consumers and business reduce costs, consumption and environmental impact on the planet.