No, no puedes

COPENHAGUE - Varios miles de funcionarios de 194 países se acaban de reunir en Cancún, México, para otra cumbre más sobre el clima mundial. Insatisfechos con el ritmo de la diplomacia del clima, muchas personas se preguntan qué pueden hacer por su cuenta sobre el cambio climático .

Desde hace años, los activistas por el clima, desde Al Gore a Leonardo DiCaprio, han argumentado que las acciones individuales, tales como conducir automóviles más económicos y el uso de bombillas más eficientes, son un elemento crucial en el esfuerzo por abordar el calentamiento global. El panel sobre el clima de Naciones Unidas y la Agencia Internacional de la Energía se hacen eco de este sentimiento, insistiendo en que el aumento de la eficiencia energética podría reducir el consumo de energía hasta en un 30%, lo que haría de la mejora de la eficiencia un remedio efectivo para el cambio climático. Pero, ¿es realmente así?

Lo siguiente da que pensar: a principios de la década de 1970, el estadounidense promedio gastaba alrededor de 70 millones de unidades térmicas británicas (BTU) al año para calentar, enfriar y dar electricidad a su casa. Desde entonces, por supuesto, hemos hecho grandes avances en la eficiencia energética. Como The Washington Post informara hace poco, los lavavajillas utilizan ahora un 45% menos de energía que hace dos décadas y los refrigeradores un 51% menos. Entonces, ¿cuánta energía usan hoy los estadounidenses en sus hogares? Sobre una base per cápita, la cifra es más o menos la de hace 40 años: 70 millones de BTU.

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