Energy Saving: Ergonomics And Logistics For Real People
The very high temperatures in the U.K. this week should give us all pause for thought about global warming. One idea which might come from that is a realisation that there are many small ways in which energy conservation could be ‘designed in’ to our every day lives. Perhaps we should even have citizens’ competitions to see who can come up with the best ideas?
We’re in the middle of a really big heat wave, and all of a sudden everyone is thinking about climate change and sustainable energy resourcing. Now, to mix our metaphors, is the time to strike on this one, whilst the iron is hot.
Not a few of us find it strange that we have to use energy to stay cool at the moment – rather the reverse of the usual problem; and the more curious of us have also begun to consider the mechanisms and costs of that commodity, still quite rare in domsetic buildings in the U.K., the air conditioning system. There is apparently a risk that more widespread adoption of this much vaunted facility could wipe out any gains in energy conservation which we in the U.K. are beginning to make. It can give a boost to the economies of very warm places, as it did in the USA, but at serious cost to the planet itself.
Ways to save energy
There are many ways that everyone can do their bit to save the planet, and these days most of us are aware of at least some of them. I wonder however whether we could do a little extra, by thinking more collectively about ‘designing in’ some of these strategies… could we have wall panels in easily reachable places displaying the switches for our televisons and the like (thus perhaps ensuring that the machines are fully actually turned off when not in use)? Why aren’t down-pipes automatically equipped with waterbutt linkage? What about individually operated small fans fitted as standard in most rooms of our homes, rather than hankering after complete air conditioning? Why aren’t gardens normally furnished with composting facilities? Where is the normal facility for low lighting (solar-boosted of course) via photo-sensors in our porches and other similar areas?
Gripping the public imagination
These are just a very few ideas, and doubtless they have all already been taken up somewhere. What would be good now, however, is if we made these suggestions central to our way of thinking; and what better time to start than when for just a few days we begin to realise what ‘global warming’ really means? Somehow, we need to get everyone’s imaginations gomg on this one. How about some sort of national competition or suggestion box?