Last night, Bonnie and I went to a local restaurant for free food in return for enduring a presentation for over-priced products. In this case, the products were a method for injecting so-called probiotic (good bacteria) into our air vents, a solar-powered attic fan, and multi-layered aluminized insulation for our attic. The products presented might have been good enough, but were chillingly expensive, although the NASA insulation this one was supposed to be based on had a dozen layers, as opposed to their three.
The point of bringing this up is that here in Mississippi, we consume a vast amount of energy on home climate control. We have been advised, loudly and often, that climate change is an existential threat (I, for one, have long been convinced of this), and that our energy use is the main force behind the global warming that is driving it. It seems to me that a great use of infrastructure dollars would be to subsidize some well-tested version of these fans and insulation. The actual NASA version is used to protect fire-fighters trapped in the fire they are fighting. It is awesomely effective at stopping heat transfer. If everybody in Columbus had it installed, we would cut our gas and electricity use by 50 percent to 70 percent, depending on how close we came to the actual NASA product. That would shrink our green footprint very significantly. Add in solar attic fans and we could improve on that.
I strongly recommend that our State decision-makers consider using some of our infrastructure money to subsidize this technology. It would be an easy and cheap chore to evaluate the products on offer. For all I know, Consumer Reports would do that for us for free. As an encouragement, I am sure that those decision-makers could find welcome support from the lobbyists for the companies that make and install the products.