"Is Our Reliance On Air-Conditioning Warming The Planet?"

"In conversation with Eric Dean Wilson, a professor who investigates the history and impact of artificial cooling on the environment"

"In 1987, history was made when the Montreal Protocol banned CFCs (chlorofluorocarbons), air conditioner refrigerants that were escaping into the atmosphere and rapidly tearing a hole in the Earth’s protective ozone layer.

Eric Dean Wilson, a professor who teaches climate-themed writing and environmental justice at Queens College in New York, has spent much of the past six years investigating the history and impact of artificial cooling on the environment.

“I took a hard, critical look at something so familiar and mundane to us, to defamiliarize it and to see how it’s connected to our planetary emergency,” he told The Washington Post.

Wilson writes about how we narrowly averted ecological disaster in his new book, “After Cooling, on Freon, Global Warming and the Terrible Cost of Comfort.”

But overdependence on air conditioning remains a serious problem. Ironically, he writes, “Our unthinking acceptance of temperature-controlled comfort has pushed the world closer to discomfort” by accelerating global warming."

Richard Schiffman reports for the Washington Post July 21, 2021.

Source: Washington Post, 07/23/2021