Too many dilemmas

If I drive my car to work, I’m putting unnecessary ozone into the air and shortening my life.
If I ride my bike to work, I’m sucking excess PM2.5 into my lungs and shortening my life.

If I turn on the A/C, I’m using extra power from the grid and contributing to global warming.
If I use the  whole-house fan, I’m  bringing cancer-causing microparticles into the house and killing my family while we sleep.

If I eat lunch at my desk, I’m feeling those calories sink into my body and contribute to heart disease.
If I go for a run at lunch, I’m feeling those carcinogens sink into my body and contribute to lung disease.

What is an environmentally-conscious exercise-prone Sacramentan to do?

8 Comments so far

  1. likemic05 on June 26th, 2008 @ 10:36 pm

    Wow that’s truly an environmentally conscious way to look at things. It sucks that the air in Sac is still unbearable.

  2. Radio Matthew (radiomatthew) on June 27th, 2008 @ 2:01 am

    Sorry Eric, there’s nothing you can do. Life has screwed you over.

  3. sac92 on June 27th, 2008 @ 3:10 pm

    I’m not sure but I think you are supposed to blame Bush.

    But jokes aside, that’s a really interesting way to look at things. Pessimistic, even.

  4. wburg on June 28th, 2008 @ 10:09 am

    If you’re biking or walking to work, you’re putting fewer pollutants into the air. The more people joining you on bikes or feet, the less polluted the air becomes. It starts with you. Filter masks seem to be the cool fashion accessory these days.

    Same goes with the A/C vs whole house fan. Although if you want to feel better about it, you can bump up your insulation or have your A/C cleaned or replace it with a more efficient unit. You’re still using power, but less of it. Filters, in either case, can keep out some of the crud.

    If you’re exercising, your body becomes better able to resist some of the crap thrown its way. If you’re not exercising, you’re still breathing it in (one hopes you’re still breathing!) but your body can’t cope with the crud as well.

    If you walk or bike to and from work, you’re getting exercise so you don’t need to jog at lunch. If you’re feeling really bad about your lunch, eat something annoyingly healthy like a field-green salad or a sprout sandwich or something. But even if you have a liverwurst and bacon sandwich on Wonder bread, you’re saving money if you made it at home vs. eating out.

    There’s a "triangle theory" I like: most things that save money also help the environment and make you healthier. Biking to work is one example: you pollute less, you get in better shape, you don’t buy gas. If you’re actually doing it, you can be an example to those who aren’t. And hopefully, if enough people do it, the idea catches on in a bigger way, and real change is the result.

  5. cd (cndn) on June 29th, 2008 @ 9:38 pm

    I think the big-picture is how wburg sees it, but I’m guessing Eric’s immediate problem is how to balance the fire-scorched, crap-arsed air currently hanging out in our valley with his otherwise earth-friendly habits, right?

    This air quality thing is getting me down too. :(

  6. onescar on June 30th, 2008 @ 7:45 am

    If I read your posts, I’m wasting my time.
    If I don’t read your posts, my ‘idiots to study’ sample shrinks by one.

  7. cd (cndn) on July 2nd, 2008 @ 9:56 pm

    I see what you did there. Oooh, clever clever, onescar. Sheesh.

  8. saucypan on July 7th, 2008 @ 6:52 am

    The solution, clearly, is to move to Beijing and take up smoking.

    Scratch that. Living in Beijing should be enough to both ruin the environment AND one’s health. Sacto is an ozone-riffic oasis in comparison. Care to set a world record in the marathon out here in August?

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