Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Carbon footprint-

I actually awoke this morning thinking about carbon footprints. What my dream must have been I do not know. The idea was in my head upon waking, and I immediately began writing about it in that very same head.

On the matter of my blog compulsion I wrote a quick blog this morning on blogoholism. That, however, is something else.

Carbon footprint. A really good idea. A way to quantify something that is otherwise rather nebulous. It is a term that paints a picture in the head of the reader.

Already I see changes. Some have come over my lifetime. I still recall the “Don’t be a litterbug” jingles and advertisements of my youth. I remember observing the visible change as the amount of debris along highways diminished in my growing up years. It stuck, at least with me. I would have to make an effort to cast trash on the ground. I WON’T be a litterbug!

I have long believed that changes in cultures come about largely due to economics. Granted, the litterbug campaign was a successful political ploy to alter the culture. However, many government manipulations fail or go astray. No, change will be driven by money.

The cost of gasoline is going up, and will not come down. This is due to other parts of the world finally advancing into modern economies. The demand is up, but the supply is limited. Add the complication of the politics of use of resources and the situation insures higher gas prices.

For nearly a hundred years our culture has grown and been fed (literally and figuratively) on fossil fuels. Now that will change.

Yuppies going green won’t really change it. Composting systems in up-scale New York apartments won’t do anything in itself. People converting fuel burning cars into electric cars, doubling the expense (or more) of the vehicle won’t do anything in itself. However, they will drive changes in technology and the availability of that technology by spending money on green things.

As these new “green things” become more common, the price will drop and they will be integrated into our way of life.

Our big, sloppy carbon footprints will eventually become smaller and cleaner. Will it be enough, soon enough? I don’t know. I do know that the potential for profit will drive people to innovate. When the cost of doing nothing becomes great enough, even the least motivated members of planet Earth will get moving.

You will be able to track them by the ever shrinking carbon footprints they leave behind.

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