Global warming and measures to reduce energy consumption

In the past I had my doubts about global warming, but since I’ve seen An Inconvenient Truth I’m convinced that the danger is real. It is true that the documentary contains some errors, but those who deny climate change sometimes use these errors as a pretext to denounce An Inconvenient Truth in it’s entirety. Often they point at the other documentary, The Great Global Warming Swindle, to prove that global warming is not caused by human activity. The Wikipedia article describing The Great Global Warming Swindle convinces me that it is pseudoscience, the evidence linking global warming to human causes is far more convincing to me.

Even if you are a skeptic, it never hurts to consume less energy for savings on the electricity bill or petrol costs. Recently I’ve been considering to replace the remaining incandescent light bulbs in my house with LED lamps. My parents prefer incandescent light bulbs because it’s possible to use them in combination with a dimmer, unfortunately fluorescent lamps are not compatible with the same dimmers as incandescent light bulbs. Certain LED lamps are compatible with dimmers used for incandescent light bulbs. However, LED lamps still have disadvantages. Recent research (in the Dutch language) conducted on a selection of LED lamps revealed that they do not meet their specified levels of luminous intensity (and as a consequence, neither their claimed efficiency) and that their life expectancy has not been proven. Here in the Netherlands they aren’t easy to find in stores, but there are quite some Internet stores which sell them. Unfortunately they are still very expensive, so I think it’s best to wait until improved designs are available for a lower price. I’ll make sure to replace every incandescent light bulb which does not need to be dimmed with a fluorescent lamp though.

Another important measure is using a bike or public transport instead of a car. Some of my family members still insist on using a car for short distances which can be covered with a bike. It’s hard to convince them to change, but I reduce my car usage as much as possible. My PC consumes quite a lot, an average of 180 Watt when I play a game. Saving energy is a bit more difficult here, but in the near future I want to buy an ultraportable laptop which consumes far less energy. I could also use it as an alternative for my PC in certain cases when I don’t need much processing power for gaming. When it comes to water consumption, I think I should spend less time on taking a shower, usually I take quite a long time for that.

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