Cold Beer Causes Global Warming
In the News today, a University of Alberta Researcher was found head first in a Snow Bank suffering from frostbite and a Giant Wedgie.
A University of Alberta researcher is calling on Canadian beer drinkers to go green and toss their energy-guzzling beer fridges, found in one of three households across the country.
"A reduction in the use of 'beer fridges' or a movement towards the use of newer and smaller energy-efficient models in Canada would lead to lower levels of energy use in the residential sector and, in some regions, lower emissions of greenhouse gases," says researcher Denise Young in the November issue of the journal Energy Policy. The study was commissioned by Natural Resources Canada.
Beer fridges tend to be older, vintage units that consumers keep to store beverages even after they've upgraded to a more energy-efficient model to store their food. In addition to costing the consumer as much as $150 a year to operate, the older appliances also place significant demands on energy resources, the study said.
According to the Canadian Appliance Manufacturers Association, a 1985 vintage fridge uses about 1060 kilowatt-hours of energy annually. By comparison, current Energy Star refrigerators use 380 to 440 kWh annually for large models and 275-300 kWh for smaller units.
Young suggests the energy savings would total 1,165.7 million kWh annually if a substantial number of Canadians threw out their beer fridges or upgraded to a newer model. The study notes the effect on greenhouse gas emissions would be insignificant in regions that rely on hydroelectric and nuclear electricity generation.
The study says financial incentives in Canada have not proved successful, while government-operated pickup programs have managed to educate and win over consumers.