Lent without iPods?

In Britain, bishops urge people to spend the Lent without iPods. The motivation is to help those suffering from the effects of climate change.

Excuse me? How does this help?

Let's now forget the overall controversy regarding anthropogenic global warming and the not-always-so-scientific approach of the IPCC. I agree that wasting material and energy is generally a bad idea.

But I have a hard time figuring out a modern pastime that would consume less of our planet's resources than listening to iPod or some other MP3 player. There's certainly less physical matter shifted around than when listening to CDs bought from a shop, or when listening to a choir at a church, or when doing... practically anything. The electricity consumption of a player is truly, utterly minimal. The manufacturing cost and resources used do not go away, if you already have the player.

Same goes for eating in candlelight. I don't easily believe that the logistics of using candlelight is in any way less expensive in terms of resources than an incandescent light bulb. Even a light bulb that is, for Heaven's sake, frosted (now banned by the EU).

I would be perfectly fine with bishops urging people to give up listening pop music for Lent, just for the sake of spiritual healing, concentrating in the arrival of Easter, and so on. Concentrating on prayer until Easter would make sense if you want to reduce emissions. Not buying a player and just singing on your own would consume less (although quite minimally). These would be natural advice from the church. But how does it help the planet that you do not listen to an iPod that you anyway already have, or use more romantic but certainly also more wasteful light sources?

Giving so fundamentally misguided advice regarding energy usage and speaking about saving the planet is pretty weird. In fact, it sounds pretty panicky. The church leaders seem to be in such haste in catching the zeitgeist that they completely forget to use their brain.

Speaking of zeitgeist, there's just more snow coming. To the right, our poor little cherry tree, in front of the garden table & bench. The good part is that the snow probably protects the tree from extreme frost.

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