Iain, Ramesh, the divorce-is-bad-for-the-environment story tests the good faith of the eco-warriors.
If everything is so bad that individuals are now obligated to reduce their carbon footprint and governments of “free” nations are proposing to restrict the amount of air travel their citizens can enjoy in any one year, it would seem obvious that divorce ought to be up for enviro-scrutiny. It requires two households; children have two bedrooms, and need transportation to shuttle them between the two; etc. In crowded little England, the biggest pressure on the environment is from new homes, and the significant feature of those homes is that more and more of them are being built for just one adult. Perhaps under green divorce agreements the kid could forego the second bedroom and sleep in the cupboard under the stairs when he’s at dad’s home. Or under the tree in the yard we’d plant as part of the divorce-offset agreement. Or maybe we should just cut to the chase of the Toni Vernelli argument and, upon separation, have the unsustainable l’il tykes euthanized.
But, if you’re seriously calling on the developed world to “change the way we live” and not just a bunch of poseurs preening your moral superiority, divorce surely further exacerbates the wicked west’s abuse of resources. In fairness to Mayor Giuliani, he at least kept his divorce carbon neutral by moving in with that gay couple. On the other hand, that was probably canceled out by the police escort for his mistress. These are, as John Kerry would say, very nuanced matters.
UPDATE: A reader writes:
Perhaps there should be High Occupancy Residence (HOR) units for housing built on the model of HOV lanes for traffic. And like HOV lanes, where you have to meet the multi-passenger requirements to use the more efficient and more desirable lanes, the government should block off desirable real estate for those who will shack up together.
Eminent domain, baby! To save the planet!
Now you’re talking. And, as another correspondent points out, certain parties are already sitting pretty:
If one man and one woman are good for the environment then one man and THREE women are better right?