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Opinion: Why environmental conservatism won't go mainstream

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When we were first married, my husband and I lived in a little cabin outside Whitefish, Mont. We called it the Villa Debris.

Prior to hitching up with me, my husband, whom I affectionately refer to as Hot Rod, had taken his total savings of $5,000 and used it to drill a well on the property. He never hit water. So, we had a cabin, 10 acres – and a $5,000 hole.

Being married to a plumber has its perks. Hot Rod rigged up a rain collection system that fed into a cistern. He tapped into the creek to fill the tank, too. We used that water for showers and, yep, we even had a hot tub.

We had a lovely outhouse and hauled drinking water from town.  

We moved to the city – we now live in Rogersville – and to well water and, then, my conservation efforts got sloppy. While I don’t leave the house with the water running, I don’t turn the water off when I brush my teeth anymore.

Unless it hurts I don’t think conservation is going to go mainstream. Some folks, like Hot Rod, are just environmentally conscious. Other folks, like me, need to be coerced into it. If water and fuel were priced as they should be, as the precious commodities they are, we would figure out how to squeeze the most out of every drop.

Last night, Hot Rod and I watched a documentary named “Gasland.” It’s about one man’s investigation into the effects of drilling for natural gas, using a process called “fracking,” or hydraulic fracturing. Learn about it at Bottom line, the Gulf Oil crisis is one of many disasters caused by our addiction to oil, coupled with unsafe and unregulated drilling methods. There are safe ways to drill and regulations are part of a responsible approach. Regulations impose safety equipment and systems of checks and balances. Those things cost money and should drive up the cost of fuel. So be it.  

We have challenges before us. There is our economy to jump start and our planet to salvage. We know how to do all of these things, because we know how things work.

Now, can we get to it?

Ellen Rohr is an author and business consultant who offers systems for getting focused and organized, making money and having fun in business. Her latest book is “The Bare Bones Biz Plan.” She can be reached at[[In-content Ad]]


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