Cheat-Seeking Missles

Saturday, June 02, 2007

Electron Al At Work: Major Carbon Burn

Here's a picture of Al "Electron" Gore hard at work in his office just last month -- long after he was criticized for the massive carbon footprint laid down by his lifestyle.

While most of us get by with one or maybe two monitors of a somewhat standard size, Al's got three big-screen monitors burning up the juice because he's just got so much more to read than we do.

And note the flat-screen TV he's got his back to. Wouldn't a small radio perform the same function? If he's got to have a picture, he could go with a tube TV that uses far less electricity than a hi-def flat-screen.

Combine the flat-screen and the three monitors and you've entered the Big Foot zone of carbon footprints. Says the other CSM:
By 2009, when half of all new TV sales are expected to be extended- or high-definition digital sets with big screens, TV energy use will reach about 70 billion kilowatt-hours per year nationwide - about 50 percent higher than at present.
Next, note the windows. They appear to be fixed, unable to be opened, so it's up to the AC or the central heat to moderate the temperature in his office.

And then there's all that clutter -- papers, books, magazines, all produced by cutting down trees, running them through nasty chemical processes, and using a series of trucks, presses and offices full of electricity to convert them into reading material.

He could store the data in his computers instead ... but that would burn carbon too, especially with those three monster monitors.

Ah, the dilemmas of being a carbon purist! It's so much easier to just be a carbon hypocrite. Good call, Al.

(Thanks to Time for the photo; it's part of an interesting slide show on Gore's life that's got more than a bit of hero-worship dripping from it. You can view it here.)

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