Day by Day

Tuesday, August 03, 2004

Beaten about the Head and Shoulders

I loved Gregg Easterbrook when he was writing for ESPN. He never pulled any punches, and he reviled both political parties with an almost inhuman glee. Reading his pieces was a highlight of every Tuesday.

Now that he's writing for The New Republic, he still rips into people like no one else.

In the new Atlantic Monthly, Eric Alterman notes that Laurie David, wife of Larry David--among Hollywood's wealth elite owing to "Seinfeld" royalties--has become an influential environmental crusader, but herself travels in chartered Gulfstream jets. Laurie David has organized numerous celebrity save-the-environment events and "reviles the owners of SUVs as terrorist enablers, yet gives herself a pass when it comes to chartering one of the most wasteful uses of fossil-based fuels imaginable," a private jet, Alterman writes. I did a few quick calculations. The mid-sized Gulfstream G200 model can carry about 2,100 gallons of jet fuel, which is made from petroleum, and would burn around 1,200 to 1,500 gallons flying from New York to Los Angeles, depending on wind speed and how many passengers were aboard. A Hummer driven 15,000 miles, the average put on a car per year, would burn around 1,250 gallons of gasoline. So for Laurie David to take one cross-country flight in a Gulfstream is the same, in terms of Persian-Gulf dependence and greenhouse-gas emissions, as if she drove a Hummer for an entire year. But then, conservation is what other people should do.


Ouch. RTWT.

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