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Saturday, January 27, 2007

John Edwards: Driving A Ford Escape Hybrid

CINCINNATI (TDB) -- Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards isn't just talking about energy efficiency -- he now owns a Ford Escape hybrid and heats his home with solar power. His wife, Elizabeth, says she is switching to new power-saving fluorescent bulbs whenever the incandescents burn out.

"If you are thinking we are living now in harsh light, with buzzing sounds and constant flickers, you are thinking of your grandmother's fluorescent bulbs," Elizabeth Edwards wrote today on her blog. "Switching is a little bit of a bite, because the bulbs are more expensive (although Costco and eBay have some good prices), but replacing a single 60-watt incandescent bulb with a 15-watt fluorescent you use just six hours a day could see an energy savings of more than $40 over the 4 years (4 year!) life of the bulb."

Elizabeth Edwards said the family will be in Scranton Sunday to help weatherize a home in that Pennsylvania city.

Lately, the White House has been talking about energy and independence from foreign petroleum producers in unstable parts of the world. There has not been much in the way of setting examples -- nothing about discarding the big limos, going hybrid, using more efficient bulbs or heating the hot water for showers at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue with solar or geothermal energy. Same for Blair House, where the Cheney's live. Seems like it is all talk, but little visible action.

Edwards at minimum is trying to set an example. And out here in the Midwest it is heartwarming to hear about the Ford in that family -- a car built by a struggling manufacturer that employs thousands in Ohio. "We sold the conventional fuel SUV that we used to carry children, strollers, luggage and toys between Washington, DC and North Carolina, and we bought a hybrid, a Ford Escape," Elizabeth said.

Now if only more Americans would do the same.

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