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stop exercising now August 13, 2007

Posted by AP in environment.
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 an article on global warming from the times online discusses how:

Walking does more than driving to cause global warming, a leading environmentalist has calculated.

Food production is now so energy-intensive that more carbon is emitted providing a person with enough calories to walk to the shops than a car would emit over the same distance. The climate could benefit if people avoided exercise, ate less and became couch potatoes. Provided, of course, they remembered to switch off the TV rather than leaving it on standby.

any thoughts on the numbers or logic of this statement?

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1. KG - August 13, 2007

this article should be called “walking to the shops damages planet more than going by car if after walking you eat beef as opposed to driving a car and doing nothing”

goodall looks at the issue in a vacuum and crunches some numbers about walking and replacing those walking calories with beef eating versus driving a car

utterly illogical comparison

regardless, in terms of practicality this theory is stupid because it doesn’t even represent people’s current habits anyway

i doubt the population of people who walk 3 miles to a supermarket have cars
those who don’t have a car probably take public transport or walk less than 3 miles
and for those that do walk that long without a car, buying a car to not walk those miles would probably exponentially offset the benefits in terms of the footprint of production of said car, emissions etc etc

also, as you mentioned offline (that is, off-blog).. the opportunity costs of walking are not nothing.. they could be watching a dvd .. and dvds, like beef, aren’t carbon neutral either


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