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Is Using Energy Bad?

September 22, 2010

There is a theme that runs through environmental articles, blogs and literature which is that using energy is bad.

I recently was rummaging through some Treehugger blogs and saw an article titled, Change Our Building Codes from Relative to Absolute.

The gist of the article was that houses were getting bigger and were therefore consuming more energy than houses did thirty years ago, so building codes should prohibit energy use beyond a certain limit.

A bigger house also uses more materials, which, according to the article, is bad, like using more energy.

The article said, “encouraging smaller homes, like smaller cars, would save energy.”

But what’s wrong with using energy?

If energy is used efficiently, why shouldn’t we all use as much as we want?

If I like a big home why shouldn’t I have a big home?

If I like a big car, why shouldn’t I have a big car?

The article didn’t explain why using energy was bad.

My guess is that when we use energy we emit CO2, and, according to environmentalist extremists, CO2 and global warming are bad.

In fact, the article went on to say, “[we can] mine resources for savings in energy and greenhouse gasses.”

The article then attacked where we build and where we live – opting instead for small lots and mixed-use development near stores, transit etc.

The Treehugger article said, “Let’s have a building code that sets a minimum density for development and a maximum distance to shopping or transit to reduce the amount of land lost and fuel used for transport.”

Many people like to have a yard in which their children can play, or a yard for a swimming pool or other amenity. Building codes of the type proposed by the Treehugger would prevent people from achieving their dream.

The Treehugger article illustrates how the environmental movement is attempting to control our lives.

While a preoccupation with material things may work to the detriment of a balanced life, that is a personal decision – not a decision to be made by the government, as was attempted in the Waxman-Markey, cap and trade bill.

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