Wednesday, May 31, 2006

How many Hummer-Years does Laurie David consume?

Greg Easterbrook used a great term in a recent review of the Al Gore movie, "An Inconvenient Truth". It's "Hummer-Years":
For David to fly in a private jet from Los Angeles to Washington would burn about as much petroleum as driving a Hummer for a year; if she flew back in the private jet, that's two Hummer-years.
This is a great way to measure the hypocrisy of celebrities who want the "little people" to minimize their environmental impact, while making little or no sacrifice themselves. (Unless the sacrifice carries minimum inconvenience and maximum smugness value.)

Since we're talking about the environmental impact of greenhouse gases, it makes more to measure Hummer-Years in the amount of CO2 emission.

According to the Department of Energy, a 2006 Hummer H3 emits in one year 10.6 tons of CO2. (While H3's are the most efficient, they also make up 76 percent of sales.)

By comparison, according to a 2004 Aspen report, Gulfstream G3 emits 10-tons of CO2 per 1000 miles.

There are 2462 nautical miles between LA and NYC. That means that when Laurie takes a day trip to Manhattan for a fashion show and shopping, she emits 24.62 tons of CO2. That's 2.32 Hummer-Years.

Combined with the flight back to LA after a grueling day of teas and cocktail parties, that's 4.62 Hummer-Years. At least in terms of CO2 emissions, Easterbrook is low balling by half the Hummer-Years that Laurie's lifestyle often consumes. in a single day. I wonder how many Hummer-Years in takes to air condition a celebrity mansion in LA?

I'm not defending Hummers, just criticizing hypocrisy. For what it's worth, my primary form of transportation from Spring to Fall is on the right. My secondary form is below: