Stan Cox, Losing our Cool
The New Press
New York, 2010
[ This book is heavily referenced by page in a rear section of the book. ]
I suggest you buy or borrow the book to see these many references.
Some of the ills that follow in the wake of air conditioning - resource waste, climate change, ozone depletion and disorientation of the human mind and body - call for cures more complex than simply producing more energy-efficient devices or more atmospheric-friendly refrigerants. Air conditioning has also been an important tool in creating a society shot through with unsustainable trends: settlements of large human populations and fragile environments; an imbalance between indoor and outdoor life; buildings designed for dependence on high energy input; suburbanization, “masionization,” and the oversized car and commuter cultures; recklessly accelerated production and consumption; enhanced military power; and even the political shocks to this country in recent decades. None of those trends will be reversed overnight.
Undoing some of air conditioning harm could require no more than turning the switches to “off,” opening windows, and going outdoors. Other climate control dilemmas are now built so deeply into the structure of society that backing out will be much more difficult. But any energy strategy for the coming decades will be forced to deal with how we handle summer comfort. To ask hard questions about air conditioning need not raise specters of malaise, poor health, social turmoil, and economic collapse; besides, hazards like those are becoming a bit too familiar already.