Zero Power Air Conditioning

It’s beginning to get into the season where you can’t escape the heat. One way or another, Mother Nature is going to make you melt in a pool of sweat, whether it’s the heat – or humidity – that gets to you. Luckily, Mother Nature has also provided a zero power air conditioning system or two for us to take advantage of without adding to global warming … global warming – which means, more heat.

The common consensus of opinion is that Air Conditioning is the answer to all things hot and sticky in the summer. How many people do you know carry around a sweater in the summer because the air conditioning to ‘too cold’ – what’s the sense in that? Burning up more energy that the planet can sustain to keep you ‘too cold’ cannot be a good thing, so why do we keep doing it?

Air conditioning is great when life is unbearably hot, but it has also made us, and developers, lazy. There are ways to keep cool without running up a larger than winter energy bill, recarving the hole in the ozone layer or achieving a one person climate change, but it takes effort. The ‘set it and forget it’ mentality is easy for you, but not for the environment. It’s time to take a little responsibility for the power we consume.

Something as simple as opening a window can cool your home. Revolutionary – I know, who’d have ever thought it! Before air conditioning, houses used to be designed to allow for natural air flow with high ceilings, lots of tall windows that opened fully at the bottom, house orientation to the sun, cool basements, tree planting next to the home for shade and lovely long and wide verandahs for healthy outdoor living. These pre air conditioning tips are what we need to try to accommodate in our living areas. Even putting a small fan in front of a window to draw the cooler air in will create air flow around any room. These are things which mean you can enjoy a cool home, without too much energy consumption.

There are times in the summer when you feel like you are drowning in your own sweat, and you cannot escape using the air conditioning. But if we make an effort to limit those times to when absolutely necessary, then we can help reduce our carbon footprint on the earth. If everyone could delay putting on their air conditioning for one week, we could power a large city for that week on the energy we did not use.

Maybe this year is the year we all take a look at the temperature outside before we switch on our air conditioning, rather than looking at the date and saying, ‘Today’s the day we turn it on’. Air conditioners will come and go, but the earth is here to stay. Let’s give it a helping hand to stay healthy and consider Mother Nature’s zero power air conditioning units first. After all, Mother knows best…


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