By ELISABETH ROSENTHAL June 21, 2012, 11:49 am
With scorching heat enveloping New York City this week, I’m suffering from air-conditioner envy. I want a model like the one I saw in April at the Terre Policy Center in Pune, India. But I can’t buy it.
As Andrew W. Lehren and I report in The Times, the warming effects of air-conditioning gases are reaching crisis proportions as more and more people in countries like India and China buy the appliances. (Some readers have rightly pointed out that people in industrialized countries depend far more heavily on air-conditioning.)
The Environmental Protection Agency says that climate change will increase the use of air-conditioning because it will lead to more hot days and heat waves. Durwood Zaelke, president of the Institute for Governance and Sustainable Development, points out that “cooling degree days” — a metric related to how much energy is needed to cool a home — were 17 percent above normal in the United States in 2010.
So far the E.P.A.’s focus has been on improved energy efficiency of air-conditioners. Since most electricity generated in the United States comes from fossil fuels, more efficient air-conditioners means less fuel burned and lower carbon dioxide emissions.
To read the entire article go to: http://green.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/06/21/my-air-conditioner-envy/Share This Post