Re: OT It's now officially HOT
- From: "Cheryl in Oz" <cawaitesATnetconnectDOTcomDOTau>
- Date: Mon, 2 Jan 2006 11:01:49 +1100
I couldn't agree more.
I designed my house and just a few changes in "normal" construction mean
that I have only used the Air Con twice this year for about two hours at a
time, and I begrudge even that. Our temps go from overnight 15F to daytime
120F (about -10C to 46C) and for most of the year I need neither heating nor
cooling. I change my clothing to suit the temperature instead of burning
energy to heat/cool the whole house, I have extra insulation and good
ventilation, and I put a little effort into convincing my builder not to
just follow the herd in house design. It is not only kinder to the
environment - it is heaps cheaper for me!
I wish I could have afforded to do more to the house design, but it actually
costs more to build an energy efficient house because it is not "standard".
Now - isn't that a sad comment on our attitudes! I would love to have the
money to sponsor a project for student architects to actually build housing
that is more efficient to run in a wide range of climates, and then help
them set up a company to build them. When I win the big lottery it will be
my priority - right after taking all my current students to the Houston Show
for a shopping spree!! ROFL (Can you tell I once dreamed of being an
Architects can design better housing, but the mass-producing construction
companies are usually more interested in cheaper building than more
efficient operation. So the average couple looking for a first home don't
even get to see the options, even if they could afford to buy a
"non-standard" house. However, some local councils here are now imposing
strict guidelines about water recycling on new housing developments, and our
State Govt subsidises water tanks and solar panels (although not enough!) so
I guess there is some hope. Anyway - the biggest problem is the "flick a
switch" attitude that most of us have grown so used to! And Jack - it's not
just the US!
In our outback areas the miners have built - and still do build - entire
towns underground, and they don't use air conditioning at all even in
50Cplus heat. For anyone touring out this way, there are 4star hotels
underground (apparently you need spectacular views out the windows to get
5stars LOL) And Parliament House in Canberra was designed to be covered
with dirt. They took the top off a hill, built the House, and then put the
hill back on top. The savings in energy costs would have been enormous, but
of course the "residents" of the day just had to have their spectacular
frontages, glass walls and big windows, so many of the advantages were
External appearance and conformity are huge barriers to getting people to
accept "different" designs. Can you believe that there is more than one
Defence Force Mess in potential "forward areas" that have massive plate
glass windows all around and that need enormous air conditioners just to
keep them habitable? Never mind the personnel risk from shattered glass,
the need for sunglasses inside or the huge heating/cooling bills - they look
fabulous in the pictures and the views are very nice!!!
Before anyone jumps down my throat - I am NOT advocating that we all dig
holes to live in. But couldn't we all put the cost of running air
conditioning into insulation, put on an extra jumper in winter and stop to
think before we flick another switch to be "comfortable"?
Climbing down off my soapbox now . . . . .
Melinda I'm gald for both of us that it is now so much cooler.--
Cheryl in Oz
"Jack Campin - bogus address" <bogus@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote in message
> [46C heat]
>>> It's hit 42C here today! Despite having air conditioning we are hot
>>> inside, the air conditioners are struggling to cool the air down to
>>> a comfortable level.
>> You need a bigger AC unit!!
> With sensible design you don't.
> Airconditioning is an appalling waste of energy.
> Jack Campin: 11 Third St, Newtongrange EH22 4PU, Scotland | tel 0131 660
> <http://www.purr.demon.co.uk/jack/> for CD-ROMs and free | fax 0870 0554
> stuff: Scottish music, food intolerance, & Mac logic fonts | mob 07800 739