Is 2010 the end of a decade or the beginning of a new one? People start counting at the number one while some scientists and mathematicians insist that zero is the start. At Mission Control zero is the last number and to "Three Dog Night": One is the loneliest number that you'll ever do.Two can be as bad as one.It's the loneliest number since the number one.
Now to the point. We are never alone. We are in this thing together as one. You can't escape me until my carbon has been returned to the planet and the water in my body has evaporated. While I'm here I'm using resources as part of a food chain, a carbon chain, and a resource consumer. So are you. So is everyone. Those ones add up to 6,887,000,000, according to Wikipedia. The sites says that since the Black Plague in 1400 the population has been steadily increasing.
Resources are falling too. Yes we might find more but they are falling nevertheless. Where does it end? So what can you do about it? Slow it down. Turn it around.
You have a moral, ethical, planetary, and special obligation to help. Not helping is like driving by a car crash and failing to render aid. I'm not saying we causing global warming, or the more vague term of climate change. I'm saying we are heading for a cliff and nobody is sure how far away it is. You may not know where the line is but you'll surely know when you've crossed it.
Every great breakthrough from medicine to agriculture has, in the end, created more suffering because it has allowed more people to live longer and have more babies so that when that breakthrough has succeed to it's ultimate point the point in the curve is higher. There are more people to starve, to get sick, to suffer.
How can we stop this? It's in the little things you do. How you dispose of your trash, when you walk instead of drive, what type of car you drive, and, of course, the envelope of your home. The windows, siding, and roof of your home are killing your great grandchildren. So is your trash.
Why not give your neighbor recycle bags for Christmas or whatever your winter celebration happens to be? Separate your trash for the recyclers. Buy a little better dish washer. Teach your kids to turn off the lights. Open the windows on pretty days. Use a blanket or a sweater when chilly rather than spike up the heat.
Frugalistas will tell you that they'll spend money to keep from losing money long term on utilities and HVAC repairs. Plus they help your great grandchildren.
When you don't consider ventilating your attic properly or use a contractor that doesn't care about the environment, you are committing a crime against humanity. Imagine if you fall a few points shy on the balance sheet and get eternal damnation. You couldn't be reborn if the only thing you did with God's creation was just squandered it. Think about it. Think deep and hard. There are consequences and those that do good will receive rewards while those that don't reap what they sow. But in this lifetime and those of posterity, we will all reap what others sowed.
Some say"well China pollutes." "Billy gots a nickel. I wants a nickel too." Whaaaaaaaa!
Do you remember the Cuyahoga River , the river that caught fire in 1969? A river caught fire? Yes it did. And we turned it around and cleaned up this country. Now people around the world are growing richer and dying faster because they breath junk. In Tehran the air burns their throats. In Pakistan people are getting cancer from pesticides. The Chinese are increasing in wealth but dying of smog.
There is not a sickly rich man who wouldn't trade his wealth for his health, unless he was stupid.
You can eat healthy and exercise but that doesn't give you the right to give my son emphysema. If anyone in Dallas lives long enough he'll get that disease because of the smog.
The point is my recommendation for a New Years resolution: 2011 is the year I went green. Or greener. Get up and go outside. Look around your house at the cracks. Go in the attic and see if you can see light coming in your soffit vents. Check your attic access and see it it is weather stripped. When the frost comes, go outside and see if the frost on your house melts first or last in the neighborhood. If it is first, you lose. If one area goes rapidly while others go slowly, and you don't have a cathedral ceiling there, then go figure out why the heat is pouring out right there.
Energy loss is like a garden soaker hose. As you stop the largest hole in the hose, more water makes it to the end of the hose but the smaller hoses leak a little more too. Start by fixing the big energy losers first. If you put on a great energy efficient roof and ventilation system but your air conditioning ducts are ripped open, you'll have a cooler attic than anyone else.
I commented to one of my customers that he had nice windows. He cursed the guy that put them in. He said they did nothing for him. I knew that this was wrong. His ducts were torn, he had little insulation, his low sloped roof had little ventilation. There was no energy for his windows to save.
With his new radiant barrier deck and properly balance ventilation system designed around "The 300 Rule" and Venturi and Bernoulli Principles, I had effectively given him his new windows. They might have been there in form but metaphysically they were not functioning as energy efficient windows. They were a mirage.
So if you want your windows, insulation, and HVAC system to work better, fix your ventilation.
Having regressed for the umpteenth time, I reiterate: Let's make 2011 the year we started being considerate to God's gift of planet Earth and let's not be the ones who stole if from future generations.
New flash! We've been informed that we're receiving the Angie's List Super Service Award for our roofing.
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