much political hay was made of the recent discovery that the Ontario government's Web site offers no tips on how to conserve electricity or what to do if the lights go out. But why would people serious about cutting back on the juice they use be searching the Web for tips? Step one for saving electricity might be to turn off your computer and not surf the Internet for 10 hours a day.
Maybe some time in the dark would do us good. If anything, summer should be the time when we disconnect from our plugged-in, hyper-connected, reach-me-everywhere culture. Instead, people inevitably end up lugging the cellphone and laptop up to the cottage, out on the golf course and into canoes, scurrying off to high points and clearings to check their voicemail.
Clearly, this is wrong. If we had any sense, we'd put a stop to it.
If the heat keeps rising, though, that decision might be made for us.
For those people who aren't torn by these ethical dilemmas and want to hunt down ways to cut back on said power, the Web is full of ideas, wacky and not-so:
Ernie's place. Still no tips on what to do to cut back on consumption.
Home of the NDP, which seems more concerned with a petition about making June 30 a holiday. It's odd when you consider that the party's new slogan is Public Power.
Not much here either.
Pie charts, fancy coloured graphs and the ever-popular Ask Mr. Electricity column. Ernie could have saved himself a lot of grief by just posting a link to this page on his Web site.
The nuclear power watchdog, with links to doom-saying stories elsewhere on the Web.
The fantastically named Independent Market Operator, the folks who broker your juice. A surprisingly informative site, including today's market demand for electricity and the price you'd get if you happened to have some electricity to sell.
The self-described "voice of Canadian electricity." Use as much as you'd like.
The Independent Power Producers Society of Ontario, who would prefer that you use solar, wind or co-generation to power your electric toothbrush.
They've got the panels so you can get the power from the sun.
Home of the Toronto Renewable Energy Co-op , the folks who brought us the giant windmill at the foot of the city.
For when the lights go out.
A blackout doesn't mean you can't have some entertainment. These wind-up radios will let you tap your toes even if the rest of the block is shrouded in darkness.