I have a July 4th party with a lot of red Solo cups.
I don’t recycle them; I rinse and reuse all summer, and the next. No one has died yet.
Don’t recycle: reuse.
Fresh Direct used to deliver groceries in nine million recyclable cardboard boxes a year.
Last year they switched to these reusable bags.
Don’t recycle: reuse.
(Better still, of course: don’t use at all. I.e.: Don’t buy what you don’t need.)
Here’s the argument. Our well-intentioned recycling, they say, is not very effective.
On a related note . . .
. . . All one has to do is look at the sixty-seven recent environmental regulations that the Trump administration is rolling back. Or the fossil fuel appointees of the current administration. All it takes is a look at the actions by special interests and the results in states around the country.
The Simple Case for Renewable Energy
. . . The amount of sunshine striking the earth for one hour has the potential to power the earth for a year. The costs of solar and wind have dropped dramatically over the last ten years. Wind is now cheaper than coal in $ per kilowatt hour and solar is reaching parity with natural gas.
More than that, it is clean. “Who want’s the alternative, dirty polluting fossil fuel?” We have come to a point when the era of fossil fuels is coming to an end. Our proverbial car is in the garage with the motor running and the door closed. We have reached the limits of our atmosphere and water, and can no longer use them as garbage dumps for carbon without huge and catastrophic consequences. For example, The Guardian reports, “Artic ice melt could trigger uncontrollable climate change at global level.” . . .
Lastly, renewable energy is now creating more jobs than fossil fuels. Solar energy jobs are growing 12 times as fast as the US economy. . . . “Right now, clean energy jobs already overwhelm dirty fuels in nearly every state across America,” Sierra Club executive director, Michael Brune, [has] said. “These facts make it clear that Donald Trump is attacking clean energy jobs purely in order to boost the profits of fossil fuel billionaires.”
. . . A report by The Rolling Stone, The Koch Brothers’ Dirty War on Solar Power, says, “… the birth of Solar poses a grave threat to those who profit from burning fossil fuels. And investor-owned utilities, together with Koch-brothers-funded front groups like American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), are mounting a fierce, rear-guard resistance at the state level – pushing rate hikes and punishing fees for homeowners who turn to solar power. Their efforts have darkened green-energy prospects in could-be solar superpowers like Arizona and Nevada. But nowhere has the solar industry been more eclipsed than in Florida, where the utilities’ powers of obstruction are unrivaled.”
. . . In support of these actions, in 2016, utilities, coal and oil companies have more than 1770 lobbyists on Capital Hill and spent $275.8 million to get over $37 billion in subsidies as well as favorable laws. Globally, this number is much higher. The IMF reports the oil industry may receive up to $5.3 trillion in subsidies globally. . . .
Not included on the negative cost side of any equation are the hidden costs of climate change running to hundreds of billions of dollars. Consider the increased costs from recent hurricanes and California wildfires as one example. . . .
[Many, many, many more paragraphs follow — which may be forgiven, as what’s at stake here is the habitability of our planet.]
We are all connected. Savor the earth.
L. Hobart Stocking
→ Long-time readers may recall this 2007 post touting solar energy (but suggesting — with tons of caveats — shorting First Solar, then $281, now $64) . . . and harkening back to the solar-energy cover story New York Magazine let me write in 1974. We’ve been at this a long time.
And have come a long way!
My electric bill at the beach this summer has run $12.88 a month (a base administrative fee), for zero kilowatts supplied. The sun did the rest.
Oh! And can I say one more thing as summer winds down? Did you click that red Solo cup link above? It’s a lot more fun than you might imagine.
Quote of the Day
Triumphant wife to down-and-out husband: I've consolidated all our bills into one missed payment.~Frank Cotham cartoon in the October 11, 1999, New Yorker
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