Five Percent: Conserve Energy

Climate Change Is Important: Energy Conservation is the First Step

December 2, 2007

Green Spam

Category: Observations,Technology – Tom Harrison – 10:43 pm

I get a lot of spam at work since I get all the email that isn’t addressed to anyone real. Most of it is cut off at the pass by our mail server, most of the rest gets directed to my Spam folder, and 5 or 10 a day find their way into my inbox. I can assure you that most are directed towards men and having a subject you can guess. The Nigerian scam emails have dwindled to almost nothing, phishing spams are still occasional, and stock tips about new, undiscovered companies are still around.

But I had not seen “green” spam until I got the following message; by far the most literate, technically accurate, and socially acceptable spam I have every seen:

From: [*** name removed at request of sender ***] [mailto:******]
Sent: Tuesday, November 20, 2007 8:58 AM
To: *** numerous addresses, including a bogus one to our company ***
Subject: It Cannot Hurt to Keep this on Your Mind….

From The Environmental News Network:

Act Now on Climate Change: Go For Energy Efficiency.

The latest report on the state of global warming from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change ((IPCC) warns that without action soon climate change may cause abrupt and irreversible impacts.

(Glaciers, like those on Greenland, may experience rapid meltdown and cause sea levels to rise. Once gone glaciers won’t freeze up again. Droughts similar to that now being experienced in the southeast US may be more frequent and perhaps permanent. Populations without water to support them will have to move, never to return.) Fortunately action could be taken immediately. Energy, of which most of it comes from carbon emitting sources, can be used more efficiently. Changing a light bulb does help.

According to a new study commissioned by the United Nations Foundation, leading industrial nations – the G8 and Plus 5 countries in particular – could avert the most serious climate effects by reducing carbon levels, simply by cutting wasted energy. That is, the nations need to adopt a steady regime of improvements in overall national energy efficiency.

The report – Realizing the Potential of Energy Efficiency: Targets, Policies, and Measures for G8 Counties – says that the world’s most powerful nations need to double their annual rate of improvements in energy efficiency to 2.5 percent per year. If they do that, the report says, the global amount of carbon dioxide and carbon dioxide equivalents in the atmosphere could be kept below 550 parts per million (ppm) not including any additional measures that might be taken. Those efficiency measures would make the goal of carbon dioxide equivalent at 400-450 ppm more attainable.

Above 400-450 ppm, scientists predict unavoidable and catastrophic climate change effects.

Those additional measures would be more renewable energies, and perhaps carbon sequestration.

And there’s a benefit to those economies as well.

Doubling energy efficiency would avoid the need for new energy production equal to 2,000 coal-fired power plants. Up to 80 percent of projected new energy expected to be supplied by coal by 2030 wouldn’t be needed in those G8 countries. By 2030 G8 energy demand would be reduced by 20 percent. An investment of 3.2 trillion in energy efficiency programs, technologies and upgrades would be needed, but $ 3 trillion in new power plants could be avoided. The difference – the $200 billion – would be made up by reduced energy bills.
Energy efficiency improvements would pay for themselves in 3 – 5 years, meaning businesses and consumers would quickly see lower energy bills.

A task force of the United Nations Foundation, the Dow Chemical Company and the Alliance to Save Energy has been created to bring together business and nonprofit leaders to work with energy experts and the G8 and Plus 5 countries, in particular, and encourage them to pledge to improve energy efficiency 2.5 percent each year, act to adopt plans to meet the goal and review progress towards meeting the goals at an annual government summit.

Whatever it takes, I say. Of course the people trying to sell knock-off Viagra are probably saying the same thing.


  1. […] to define the high road, as reported in an article from last week in the NY Times. Whether it be Green Spam, the people selling shower heads that don’t use less water, or companies who think they just […]

    Pingback by NY Times Article on Green Scammers | Five Percent: Conserve a Little Energy — December 2, 2007 @ 10:56 pm

  2. Hmmm, while I would love to take the credit, the above message was not written by me. In fact, I find information on climate change etc from articles on the the net and copy and paste them to send to my friends and family (and accidentally DigitalAdvisor) as reminders of this important issue. Sorry! Please at least remove my name from this web page.

    Comment by Hi! — January 27, 2008 @ 12:33 am

  3. Hello “Hi!” — I have removed your name from the post as per your request. I guess I made an incorrect assumption that it was intentional “spam”, but I hope you saw my point that it was by far the best unsolicited email I have gotten :-)


    Comment by Tom Harrison — January 27, 2008 @ 4:58 pm

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