Thursday, August 02, 2007

smoking ban fuels climate change

It's been a month now that smokers have been evicted from pubs and bars in England, and business is going on as usual ... at the cost of the climate. Because what happens is that every pub that has even a square foot of outside space has furnished that with a gazebo and patio-heaters, and bingo, they have a nice and cozy pub for smokers again. Who cares that the heaters are the most energy-wasting and climate-damaging invention ever made ? I've read this week that the current epidemic of patio heaters is likely to scupper Britain's chance of meeting its Kyoto target.

There is more on patio heaters (pre-smoking ban) here:,,1589372,00.html

I pinch myself every time I see one, wondering whether I fell into Alice's rabbit hole. I mean how unbelievably stupid can people be, to produce, sell, buy, use these things ? Back in the 70s, when awareness of environmental issues awoke in Germany, we used to joke about people who had poorly insulated homes that "they might as well heat the garden". Never in my weirdest nightmares would the possibility have occurred to me that 30 years later, with climate change on the doorstep, people would actually heat their gardens (and the atmosphere) on purpose.

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