Earth Day? When did it disappear?
Garrison Keillor has a succinct recap of the creation of Earth Day in 1970, as he often does for recent historical events that seem to fade from public attention much too quickly.
Don’t miss the “Telephone” poem lead-in. It ties in more than you might think at first.
|… the EPA [United States Environmental Protection Agency] was created December 2, 1970 …|
I was 15, about the same age as many of the Boy Scouts I try to counsel these days.
Seven years later. I started working full time for the EPA.
Forty years later, I’ve been out of the environmental field for more than a decade, after switching from a governmental hat to an industrial one.
All right, you probably knew all of the above. What now? Electric usage tracking, that’s what. I dabbled in monitoring to be able to turn off the appliances that use a lot, but you know what? It’s easy. Just turn off everything you aren’t using, and buy the most efficient appliances whenever replacement is due.
Our local electric utility provides a lot of data with each month’s bill. I have nearly 10 years of tracking online.
I am unsure how much longer EditGrid will be online, but for now, you should be able to see the chart of our daily average usage for April going back to 2002. Folks in other countries will probably say the American lifestyle uses a lot more power than everyone else, and they’d probably be right. I’ve got reduction goals in mind, and am sharing what we’ve accomplished so far.
For the month of March (typically a good bit of winter heating left), I have a chart that also shows the average daily temperature, as reported on my bill. It almost looks like we crossed lines between 2008 and 2010, but the blue (kWH/day) remains on top.
March usage was up a bit over 2009, but the month was cooler.
I almost forgot:
Tomorrow is another day on Earth. What are you doing for our legacy?