Thursday, June 19, 2008

Off Shore Drilling, 45 More Nuclear Reactors - What Can We Do?

Yesterday was not a warm and fuzzy news day. The Mississippi is rising. The Taliban is wreaking more havoc than usual. President Bush wants to drill off shore. Senator McCain wants to build 45 more nuclear reactors in the next 20 years. 

I expect the last two news items to be discussed on most environmental/green blogs over the next few days. Both of these men will be blasted for their proposals. And there is definitely some reason to do so.

But here's the thing. They are trying to appease a nation that has become addicted to energy. The news will talk about our oil addiction, but aren't we really addicted to anything that makes and uses energy. If we can't have all the fuel for our cars, electricity for our homes, and strawberries in February that we want, we get pissy. 

These men are just giving us what we have proven time and time again what we want - quick, cheap and seemingly endless sources of energy. Perhaps, if we want to really send a message to them and all politicians, in addition to letters to our congressmen and an infinite number of columnists and bloggers complaining and analyzing and blaming, we should USE LESS ENERGY.

Here are some ways I plan on using less energy today:
  • Making sure all lights, tv's and radios are turned off when a room is left. With the boys home from school now, lights are being left on, but I've already talked to them this morning about changing that. 
  • Plan the errands that I have to run today so that I drive the shortest distance while still getting everything done.
  • Ride our bikes to the pool and take all our own snacks for trashless snacks and drinks.
  • Car pool to a dinner that I have tonight.
  • Remember to power down everything in my office when I'm going to be out of it for more than a half hour.
Like I told my boys this morning, if we didn't use so much energy, the politicians wouldn't be scrambling to find out how to make more energy. If we want them to make responsible choices about creating energy then we need to make responsible choices about using it.

How are you going to be more responsible today with your energy choices?

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Sunny Ellis said...

In overhead lights with multiple bulbs, I only use as many bulbs as I actually need to see. Why burn 4 light bulbs when 2 will do?

Robin Shreeves said...

Sunny - That's a good suggestion. We do that in our dining room, but really it's just because we're too lazy to get up there and put new lightbulbs in. I never thought of it as being green!

Allison said...

When I heard about Bush asking to lift the offshore oil drilling ban I got scared. All that does is feed our energy bandaid. Why can't more people in the US look to the future? Other country's can do it. I know our US mentality is "I want it now" but someday we won't have it, then what? Is it that our country is so young compared to others in Europe and Asia that we don't see a future yet like they do. Do we still need to go through growing pains to see the problems our nation faces?

Robin Shreeves said...

Allison - I don't know what it's going to take. But I try to not worry or judge others. I think being a green example is the best way to get others thinking about it all. And turning green started as a thought process for me so I hope that by getting others thinking, they'll eventually start doing.