Monday, July 30, 2007

Looks vs. deeds

An interesting dissection of the current state of political, commercial and consumer 'engagement' with things 'green' : The Make-Believe of Green Politics

I'm not very interested in lifestyle statements. More just getting on with mine best I can ... and not screwing up the kids' future too much in the process.

As a consequence I know a bit, but was surprised with some things that I read here.

Like the notion of driving a car means you are doing 'your bit' to save the planet. Sweet.

The comparison with the Civic shocked me. Though to be fair I'd say a full 11mpg on the city cycle, at 20% better gives the Prius quite an edge in the thrift stakes. At least for this usage. I recently visited the Hay Festival here in the West of the UK, and this year was very green themed. So the car park was like a Prius lot. Trouble is, almost all had probably come from London down the motorway, which means they were mainly lugging a dormant, and vast amount of weight. Image is all, as you suggest. I'm interested as to where the Prius get used in the US to assess the actual value it does confer, for which I have coined the term enviROI.

This is the actual benefit of any product/ initiative to the planet, and future generations. It can have a woeful financial ROI, (most do), but so long as in making running and disposing of the thing it means less of what's 'bad' (definitions seem to vary daily, so I'm not getting into footprints), then more power to you elbow... or electric drivetain.

I'd have to agree that the Prius has a distinct design, but, subjectively, it is a dog. It looks like something out of a 70's futuristic TV show. And that is a shame, because that may mean appealing only to a minority who are only governed by making a statement, rather than a lot to more who simply have other factors (style being one) that do matter along with (and may outweigh) a few mpg.

Pity. And yes, hence a parable for the broader politics of global warming. Along with the positive suggestions, well said.

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