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View Full Version : Martyr To Enviro-Whackism Lauded.



Gingersnap
11-12-2008, 05:11 PM
Joan Pick, the energy miser who is leaving a tiny carbon footprint

Laura Dixon

There are tribes in the Amazon rainforests who never use motorised transport, and in wooded Welsh valleys a few bold souls subsist without gas or mains electricity, but Joan Pick is doing it in Croydon.

After 36 years of self-imposed environmental abstinence, Miss Pick, 67, is now being recognised as an eco-heroine with one of the smallest carbon footprints in the country.

She never heats her flat and eats all her food raw. She has avoided travelling on any form of motorised transport since 1973. Instead, like a Yanomami hunter, she travels on foot, jogging 12 miles a day across the suburbs of southeast London.

Only twice has she broken this self-imposed code: in 1991, when she dislocated her shoulder and paramedics insisted on taking her to hospital in an ambulance; and this year, at her mother's funeral, when she agreed to travel in the hearse.

Neighbours describe Miss Pick variously as “a remarkable lady” and “the woman who runs everywhere”. She describes herself as an “energy economist”.

“I'm a minimal energy user,” she said. She regards her life as an important experiment and an example to others. “I have to experiment with the energy-efficient lifestyle to prove it's survivable.”

Miss Pick parted ways with the combustion engine after working as a scientific adviser to the energy industry in 1972. While working on energy efficiency, she concluded that mass consumption was wrong and began cutting back. The first casualty was her Morris Minor Millennium, which was consigned to her garage in 1972, where it remains to this day.

Out, too, went cooked meals: instead she began to live on nuts, fruit and vegetables. She abandoned television in 1975, a year after Vera Duckworth first appeared on Coronation Street.

She also abandoned men. “No one could possibly live with me,” she said. “You can't have someone else around to contradict you.”

She estimates that she ran 135,415 miles in the early 1970s, going as far as Tower Bridge to the north of Croydon, Tolworth to the west, Sidcup to the east and Reigate to the south. These were the most distant points of her existence. She stopped going on holiday.

Her only luxury is boiled water - for tea, which she takes with condensed milk, and for washing - and a pair of trousers that she recently purchased, in a sudden fit of unbridled consumerism, from Marks & Spencer. Otherwise she makes her own clothes.

Britain's other leading “minimal energy users” applaud her achievements. Judy Pilawa, 52, who lives in a log cabin she built in a Welsh wood 15 years ago, said: “Although I live in a fairly low-impact way, I don't think my impact is as low as Joan's.”

Donnachadh McCarthy, a former ballet dancer, who was converted to environmentalism after living with the Yanomami Indians in the Amazon jungle in 1992, said: “She sounds like she has a pretty convincing case to have one of the lowest carbon footprints.”

Mr McCarthy measures his carbon footprint at “minus a quarter of a tonne, because I produce more energy than I use, and sell it back to the grid”.

With scary insane old person pic at link. I can understand giving up the heating, Brits only got central heating about 20 minutes ago, and I can understand getting rid of the TV but dumping condensed milk in tea is just flat out wrong.

Saint Joan (http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/environment/article5134306.ece)

bijou
11-12-2008, 05:52 PM
With scary insane old person pic at link. I can understand giving up the heating, Brits only got central heating about 20 minutes ago, and I can understand getting rid of the TV but dumping condensed milk in tea is just flat out wrong.

Saint Joan (http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/environment/article5134306.ece)

1594 for greenhouses 1700's for domestic use (http://www.jgheatingservices.co.uk/1500s-To-The-Present-Day.html)

Gingersnap
11-12-2008, 08:18 PM
1594 for greenhouses 1700's for domestic use (http://www.jgheatingservices.co.uk/1500s-To-The-Present-Day.html)

LOL! You know very well that you people were still dumping coins into your hot water heaters just a few years ago. :D

Jumpy
11-12-2008, 08:29 PM
She looks really healthy at 64. I guess one could have worse obsessions.

noonwitch
11-13-2008, 08:55 AM
She looks really healthy at 64. I guess one could have worse obsessions.


That's what I thought. My grandpa didn't give up everything, but he does walk a lot and continues to do his own yard work/snow removal (he has a tractor/earth moving thing we call his "Tonka"). He's 95.