Of course it's good to fight for lofty goals, like limitations on industrial pollution. But for our own health we should recognize that our immediate environment likewise demands our attention, and that includes the air in our own home.
our homes, regardless of size and construction, are remarkably complex ecosytems of interrelated air flows, heat and cold, moisture, thermal barriers and electricity usage (to name a few.)
Last week the Clinton Foundation and the city of Los Angeles announced plans to retrofit 140,000 streetlamp fixtures with energy efficient LED (light-emitting diode) lights over a five-year period...
I don't know what an energy-star sofa looks like. But if my daughter's teacher has any say in the matter, a bunch of 6th grade students are going to be hungering to find out.
There are two levels of sanity worth noting. The first is that much of our peak usage could be curtailed by changing our own behavior ever so slightly, or sprucing up the intelligence of our appliances so that they can do it on their own...
We don't have to build solar panels on every roof, and we can forgive ourselves for an inability to do everything at once. "This movement starts at home with the changing of a lightbulb ..."
When warmth-challenged friends come to visit cold climes from places like Los Angeles, it's important to have an energy efficient space heater in the house. One of favorite house guests brags...
... this dashing little unit houses three LED flashlights that are fine looking, spring into action at the first sign of trouble, and take orders from a mysterious, soft-spoken blinking light. They're kind of like ... Angels. At least, that was our take.
I hope Google will put provide the technological benefits of the PowerMeter to people who are unlikely ever to upgrade their dryers to Smart Dryers - who probably won't buy software or even upgrade their computers to accept the software that they could download for free.
All of this was just another lesson on the complexities and interconnectedness of this ecosystem we call our house. And the real possibility of spending large sums of money solving the wrong problem. Is it rocket science? Maybe not. But it's still pretty darn complex.