It’s about solar time

I completely endorse the letter in today’s (Wednesday, 17 January) Caymanian Compass by Eric Mildenberger.

Also the article concerning the use of hybrid cars (hats off to Dave Phipps of Electra-tech and Richard McLeod) both of which prompt me to beg for space on the Letters page.

Firstly, why on earth aren’t hybrid cars readily available on the island?

Given the chronic traffic the island has, plus the price of gasoline, surely there’s a sales opportunity here. People worldwide are becoming aware of the obvious benefits especially for urban driving.

They are available and encouraged in many other country of the world. So, what’s the problem here?

Are they too small? Ninety per cent of the time there is only one person behind the wheel of these colossal vehicles that cruise the roads.

Too quiet?

The official line is that their quiet may be considered a hazard to pedestrians. Well, what’s wrong with the good old fashioned horn?

Too slow?

Isn’t it time we all slowed down and stopped killing people in the process? (Look at the 2006 stats published in the Caymanian Compass). Speed is all relative anyway. The island is very small. We don’t need to dash about like scalded cats getting stressed out and burning up gasoline at an obscene rate. I haven’t noticed too many mountains, rivers or snow here that might warrant the many, much revered gas guzzling 4×4 cars and trucks on our roads.

As for your wallet – think of the cash electric cars would save you. It would be a rare trip to the gas station – (sorry gas station guys).

How’s about cars with photovoltaic panels? Now, there’s a thought.

As Eric has already pointed out there is solar energy in abundance here. Again, these types of car are readily accepted and used in other countries. I believe there is legislation ready to be enacted to allow for such vehicles.

I’m sure few people have failed to notice the vast increase of construction on the island. Where, please, are the solar panels? These are being promoted by Electra-Tech again.

Why not use this vast, free, supply of sustainable energy? How disgraceful that such a wealthy and developed island isn’t forging the way ahead in this region and setting an example to other small islands.

So I say make the sun your friend, it’s only likely to get stronger and hotter; surely a better friend than enemy?

So what does happen here? We only pay lip-service to the perils of climate change. ‘Soon come’ and anyway ‘we are so small – aren’t we?’

‘What difference will our contribution to world climate changes make?’

It’s a good job most other countries don’t say the same thing. Even the US is, at last, beginning to sit up and take notice. This is a dangerous complacency. Every country, both large and small is accountable for and must take responsibility for its environmental health.

A must see DVD is the much publicized documentary produced by Al Gore titled An Inconvenient Truth. It is, unfortunately, well named. If you have children or grandchildren, I believe you have a duty to see it and pay full attention. It’s available at Blockbusters.

Penny Clifford

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