I am grateful that I work in the heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning industry. There, I said it. Pope Francis is going to be so upset with me. If you hadn’t heard, the pope’s recent encyclical on the environment claims that air-conditioning is one of the world’s “harmful habits of consumption.”
Yes, air-conditioning requires energy, a lot of energy. But just think what the world would be like if we stopped using air-conditioning. More people would die rather than recover in sweltering hospitals. The elderly would succumb more frequently during heat waves. Nursing homes would be uninhabitable, as would major cities in southern climates.
And air-conditioning is the same technology that brings us refrigeration. Without refrigeration, modern medicine could not exist. Without refrigeration, food could not be transported safely across the country. Without refrigeration, countless thousands—if not millions—of people would die of food poisoning or starvation.
No, I’m sorry to say it, but Pope Francis has gotten some terrible advice on this topic. When mankind learned to harness the refrigeration cycle a little more than a century ago, it was a GOOD thing. Unlike some technological advancements that have been harmful and destructive, the development of air-conditioning and refrigeration has improved the lives of countless millions of people. In fact, it has SAVED the lives of countless millions of people.
Michelle Malkin offers further observations on this issue, including the ironic fact that the Carrier Corporation is in the process of designing and donating an expensive, sophisticated air-conditioning system for the Sistine Chapel at the Vatican, which is needed to keep Michelangelo’s priceless artwork from being ruined. Read it at: