Friday, May 26, 2006


I haven't really done a rant on the environment, but with Al Gore's new movie on global warming and the ever increasing talk about oil prices and the need for cars that get better mileage, it's about time. As I was driving home from dinner last night, I was not only looking at the houses (frequent habit now that we're thinking about buying one) but also the cars that were in the driveways. I am still amazed by the numbers of people who drive SUV's and I can't help but think of the ad campaign "What would Jesus drive?" that was done a couple of years ago and caused a lot of media attention (here 's one article among many others criticizing the idea ). While there was a lot of flack for such thinking, what is the "Christian" thing to do with the environment? What should Christian's consider when making purchases?

I don't have the answers, but I try to make conscientious choices that will have even a small effect on lessening my impact on the environment. I found a nifty little exercise that shows people how their lifestyles affect the planet - it's the ecological footprint quiz over on my links section. You answer a few questions (it takes 10 minutes or less) about what you eat, your travel habits, type of home, etc. and it calculates how much impact you have on the planet and tells you how many planets it would take to sustain the whole human race if everyone lived like you. I found it interesting that my answers came out to HALF of the average American impact, yet still more than this planet has to offer (it would take 2 1/2 planets to accomodate everyone living like me). We need to cut WAY WAY back people!! There's no other way to say it. Business, daily life, etc all has to change drastically or we're going to end up with severe shortages in ways that, I'm afraid, won't lead to some big natural disaster that ends the world as we know it, but rather causes massive amounts of poverty and inequality greater than anything we see today. How many people have to suffer before we realize we're all in this together and have to help each other - including the environment?


Trouble said...

you remember that nasty chlorox commercial with the "body soil" animation on the bed?

that's what comes to my mind when i think about my global environmental impact, yuk! when is chlorox gonna do something about that?

mandyc said...

I don't think we want clorox doing anything more - in fact they need to do less!! chlorine (the main ingredient in their standard bleach) is one of the worst chemicals for the environment - not to mention human health. But I do remember that commercial (it still grosses me out) and wonder why we don't have fabulous advertising campaigns for things like "the earth" and poverty or hunger issues - I guess it all comes down to who has the money.

Mitchell said...

The EPA has a great tool to more accurately calculate your carbon emissions for driving. I took both quizzes and had to adjust my carbon output by around 3,000lbs.

I'm already 1/4 from the average N.American, but still am waaayy behind. Plus, if you adopt the Kyoto principals for individuals (since 1/3 of all carbon emissions is from households in the U.S.), you need to be around 11,000lbs/year to be in compliance with the 1997 agreement!

I read another blog who said something to the effect of "we're trying to become sustainable without being 'primitive' ". I think we all have to give up luxuries and adjust our lifestyles. For the past 3 months, I've pondered ways to reduce my footprint without affecting my lifestyle, but it appears that large changes need to be made (since I already live a pretty environmentally friendly lifestyle). Some food for thought - you're right, everyone really needs to get on board.