Air conditioning: a cooler me, but a warmer planet

July 12, 2009

Air conditioning feels great on a hot day – but it comes with a big environmental price. In vehicles, next to driving, air conditioning is the biggest load on the engine. In homes and buildings, air conditioning can be a big part of the summer power bill. In Ontario and most US states, power consumption is actually higher in the summer than it is in the winter because of air conditioning. Considering most power still comes from fossil fuels, well… you get the picture.

But we can stay comfortable, save money and reduce the impact of air conditioning with a few simple actions:

In vehicles, use open windows at speeds below 60 KM/h (about 35 MPH); use the fan with a window open a crack at faster speeds.

In buildings, set thermostats a few degrees higher (this simple action has a HUGE impact), and only cool places where there are people, when they are there. Encourage people to dress for warm weather. (Duh!!)

You can read more tips here:

In the news

Munich Re, a huge German reinsurance company, is spearheading an effort to develop solar power in the Sahara Desert.

Yikes – a new report covering about 45,000 species of wildlife concludes that that nearly one quarter of the world’s mammals, nearly one third of amphibians and more than 1 in 8 of all bird species are at serious risk.


One Response to “Air conditioning: a cooler me, but a warmer planet”

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