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Green Piece: Power Strategies
December 2008 | Dick Herzberg, Stratford Court


Part of getting older is realizing that we have little control over most of the major issues that can alter our lives as individuals. On a daily basis we are reminded that global warming will significantly impact our environment; that our energy intensive life style is at risk; and, that our economic system is under stress and susceptible to a total melt down. We become frustrated because we have little input or control on the issues that will greatly impact our futures.

Regardless of whether the Professor and the Lawyer or the Fighter Jock and the Beauty Queen won the election, the Nation must now come to terms with determining how it will fuel itself in the future. Will we drill on the coast, will we deploy large numbers of windmills over huge tracts of land to provide power, will every roof top sport a solar collector for either hot water or electric generation, will coal be burned, gasified or liquefied to provide energy and at what price to the environment, will we finally reach political agreement on accepting the risk of nuclear waste disposal allowing for more nuclear generation?

The development of strategies at the national level will overwhelm us creating future energy supplies that will be available to us at the pump or socket. At the end of the day we will have little choice except to buy what is available to us through future markets that will be determined by others far from Del Mar. We have little individual impact on determining what that mix will be.

But, we do have great control over how we choose to use the fuels or electrons available to us now and into the future. We can assert control over our own lives and influence destiny by learning to conserve energy as much as possible. We can buy a more efficient car (or a highly efficient electric car when they come to market at affordable prices). We can consolidate our trips and manage our transportation needs with an eye to efficiency and economy. We can hang the clothes to dry in the sun and save large amounts of energy. We can put on a sweater, insulate our homes and reduce our heating load during our very moderate winter weather.

Making energy efficiency a goal and a lifestyle can give us a measure of control over our own lives and will allow us to impact positively the outcome of the great issues that swirl around us.



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