Turn off the leaf blower

Thursday, April 26, 2007

The following letter to the editor appears in the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel:

In Barbara Miner's April 22 Crossroads article, she cited the World Resources Institute and wrote that "the average person in the United States currently is responsible for about 20 tons of carbon dioxide emissions every year."

On that same Sunday morning, a friend and I were hitting tennis balls at some public courts in Whitefish Bay when a resident across the street started a gas powered leaf/grass blower. Not only was it a 15-minute assault on the senses, but it was obvious a broom or rake would have done the trick. This is one case where shrinking his "carbon footprint" would have also saved his neighbors from his noise pollution.

If we are going to reduce our carbon dioxide emissions 80% to 90% by 2050, we need to take a more serious look at our individual energy use. All of us can make small changes by carpooling at times, taking mass transportation and turning the thermostat down in the winter and up in the summer. Our lives might be better in the process.

Dave Dickinson