Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Turn Off the Power? You Can't HANDLE Turning Off the Power

I'm embarrassed to admit I had not heard of "Earth Hour."  It would be funny, if it weren't so sad. is sad.  As Bjorn Lonborg puts it:

On the evening of March 23, 1.3 billion people will go without light at 8:30—and at 9:30, and at 10:30, and for the rest of the night—just like every other night of the year. With no access to electricity, darkness after sunset is a constant reality for these people.

At the same time, another 1 billion people will participate in “Earth Hour” by turning off their lights from 8:30-9:30.

The organizers say that they are providing a way to demonstrate one’s desire to “do something” about global warming. But the reality is that Earth Hour teaches all the wrong lessens, and it actually increases CO2 emissions. Its vain symbolism reveals exactly what is wrong with today’s feel-good environmentalism. 
Earth Hour teaches us that tackling global warming is easy. Yet, by switching off the lights, all we are doing is making it harder to see.

Notice that you have not been asked to switch off anything really inconvenient, like your heating or air-conditioning, television, computer, mobile phone, or any of the myriad technologies that depend on affordable, plentiful energy electricity and make modern life possible. 

If you want to turn 


Natalie said...

It seems like an elementary school class project... except that elementary kids are much more creative and engaged than just turning out the lights.

A fourth grade class in Durham raising money for solar panels for their class to learn about energy, solar power, and of course, how to pay for such things.

John D. said...

This said it all: "... to demonstrate one’s desire to “do something”..." is hardly the same as really "doing something." So all the hubbub about CFL bulbs saving earth really was about us feeling like we were doing something. Why are we surprised? I gotta go read Harry Browne again.