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Typical Decisions with which environmentalCalculations Can Help

EnvironmentalCalculations can help with most any environmental decision one may confront. Such decision junctures may range in scope from minor, e.g., planning a menu for an event, through more impactful decisions such as planning a menu for a restaurant or a public cafeteria, designing a garden or replacing an appliance, to major decisions that dominate individuals' footprint, like reconsidering your home heating and/or cooling, electric or water heating systems, choosing a new car, considering a home or a construction lot purchase, or building a new home or redoing an existing one.

Key Requirements of Successful Recommendations

EnvironmentalCalculations is guided by the view that practical resource conservation and footprint minimization are entirely circumstance-specific; nothing is given or obvious, everything must be calculated for the specific set of circumstances at hand. (A more detailed version of this view is here.) This view becomes particularly relevant and important in junctures that require making decisions suspected (or known) to have significant environmental consequences, such as the ones mentioned above.

In many such junctures, the scope of options makes the decision-making process overwhelming. Even such seemingly (and sometimes genuinely) simple choices as replacing a dishwasher, may turn complex; should I emphasize water economy? electricity? locally sourced materials or labor? And so on. (This need for a decision metric is discussed here.)

In some simple cases, if you know your objectives precisely, such readily accessible sources as Consumers Reports or goal-specific guides published by governments or various organizations) will do the trick. In most cases, however, even deciding on the specific set of objectives you wish your decision to optimize is a weighty environmental decision, and may well also include a subjective element reflecting your own preferences and emphases.

At least in those cases, if you want to be confident your efforts and money accomplish the most, you will probably need to consult an environmental scientist. Intellectually/scientifically, what is required is a broad environmental perspective firmly rooted in theoretical geophysics and applied mathematics, and in practical site- and circumstances-dependent optimization. My solid geophysics and applied mathematics background meets and comfortably exceeds these requirements.

In addition, sound advice about many landscape-specific decisions such as some of the ones mentioned above also depends on a hard-to-define and characterize set of abilities one can only acquire informally, in the woods, imperfectly summarized as the ability to read the landscape, to integrate large and minute landscape features into a coherent story about how this landscape works. Combining my scientific training with growing up on a cattle farm (in an Israeli Kibutz) and working in it most of my youth; spending years in military field units (also in Israel); running a beef cattle herd in one of Israel's most desolate mountains; and a lifetime of vigorous outdoor pursuits including hiking, climbing and rappelling, biking, sea kayaking, windsurfing, I have perfected the ability to truly read and understand the workings of a landscape.

Actual Elements of environmentalCalculations Recommendations

Last modified on GMT by Gidon Eshel