Tuesday, May 13, 2008

How to get motivated FAST!!!!

The New York Times has a story on how Juneau, Alaska has become rapidly energy efficient when an avalanche destroyed several major transmissions towers carrying electricity from the hydroelectric dam about 40 miles away.

Moving from a green source of electricity that is relatively cheap, to now diesel which is four times more expensive has motivated serious behavior changes. Now from the article there have been definite adjustments in lifestyle, some minor and some more conscious forms of living. But it has made a difference, before the avalanche, Juneau consumed 1006 Megawatts hours per day, and as of Friday it's down to 625. A forty percent drop in a few weeks!

So what does it take to motivate change? My biggest issue with climate change naysayers is they never say when will they believe. Is there a data point where they don't summarily dismiss the impact? It reminds me of a scene from the movie "And the Band Played On" about the AIDS epidemic and the reluctance of the blood industry to do screening tests and a doctor asks "How many dead hemophiliacs do you need" For the benefit of those who can't play the video here's the text:

Blood Bank Representative:

"Is the CDC seriously suggesting that the blood industry spend one hundred million dollars a year to use a test for the wrong disease, because we've had a handful of transfusion fatalities and eight dead hemophiliacs?!?"

Don Francis (Matthew Modine) gets up and yells:

"How many dead hemophiliacs do you need? How many people have to die to make it cost efficient for you to do something about it? A hundred? A thousand? Give us a number! So we wont annoy you again, until the money you begin spending on lawsuits makes it more profitable for you to save people, than to kill them!"

The clip from the movie below:


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