With known skeptic, Professor Richard Muller’s, reversal on climate change, one can hope that the tide is turning from debate of its existence to solutions. If there is a skeptic in your household, you can still find easy ways to reduce your carbon footprint and sell him to the idea.
The Argument Against Change
One obstacle to making eco-friendly choices is the question of impact. Some may argue that one person’s changes amount to nothing in the overall scheme of things. They may also object, asking why they should sacrifice in light of all the waste around.
After all, the average American’s carbon footprint is less than 29 tons of carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2 Eq.). Total U.S. greenhouse gas emissions were 6,821.8 million metric tons CO2 Eq. in 2010. The contribution of the individual appears minuscule as the perceived benefits of a green lifestyle.
The Reason for Change
While the skeptic in your house may not appreciate carbon dioxide equivalents, he can certainly appreciate cost savings. About one-sixth of the average person’s carbon footprint comes from costs associated with shelter, such as cooling your home. For you, this means lots of opportunities to be green. It also gives you ammunition for change.
Reducing your energy costs can save you significant amounts of money in the long run. While emissions may mean nothing, saving money will. The spin you give is one for personal savings. The fact that you are also benefiting the environment can give you the satisfaction of making earth-friendly choices. This is your opportunity to save on your energy bill with simple measures, such as:
- Switching out incandescent for CFL bulbs
- Installing a programmable thermostat
- Closing shades/curtains on the sunny side of the house
When you’re asked, why bother doing that? Simply smile and say you are saving money. In addition, you can do it in a way that is virtually unnoticeable. The skeptic won’t know that the air conditioning was turned higher while he was at work.
Finally, it is important to remember that the environmental cost-savings add up. As EnergyStar.gov points out, a switch to even one CFL in all American households can prevent 9 billion pounds of greenhouse gas emissions per year. Now that is significant.