By Claude Gerstle, Citizens’ Climate Lobby
What a coincidence, on the very day The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released the summary of its latest climate appraisal and found that global warming and ocean rise are occurring at an accelerated rate my community announce it was installing gas lines.
I know, we are only going to increase our carbon footprint by a tiny amount, but the optics aren’t good.
Sixteen tons and what do you get? That’s right the average American causes emissions averaging about 16 tons of carbon dioxide. Maybe not in my community since we have so many Teslas, but we have a lot of big Beemers, Mercedes and Lexuses as well.
I would guess that with all the traveling residents of my community do along with all the landscaping maintenance that requires gas powered mowers and weed whackers, we individually use quite a bit more than the average.
I spoke to the manager of our development to try to stop this endeavor, but I had to look only as far as our new grill restaurant with its open gas flame sconces and heaters to realize where he was coming from.
I’m still not sure why everybody in the community seems to want a gas line. More likely it’s to have gas stoves for all the meals most of them never seem to cook.
I tried to point out that induction ranges are incredibly efficient with almost all the energy transferred to the pot as heat. I tried to appeal to the grandparent in them saying that indoor cooking with gas actually does cause indoor pollution and affects some people’s breathing.
As best as I could determine, the gas lines are to provide an uninterrupted source for the whole house generators so many of us have installed and which will only run about a week on a tank of propane. They realize, with global warming, the next big storm could knock out our power for a much longer time.
My neighbors may think climate change and its effects are inevitable and unstoppable. I would like to believe that we can do something to save our children’s future.
Claude Gerstle is president of the MIT Club of Palm Beach and a member of MACA, MIT Alumni for Climate Action, Citizens’ Climate Lobby and Florida Physicians for Climate Action. He lives in Palm Beach County.
“The Invading Sea” is the opinion arm of the Florida Climate Reporting Network, a collaborative of news organizations across the state focusing on the threats posed by the warming climate.