Wouldn’t it be nice to be out at the beach?
Check out this set of photos illustrating A Day at the Beach in Korea. You’d need to get away from getting away.
But speaking of impact, this paper called Environmental Lifestyle Analysis has taken an interesting and sobering look at the costs of existing in a high energy use society, with the realization that even the homeless will not get their energy use below a certain level. Its all about the costs of the supporting infrastructure being shared by anyone who ever uses them. It does not buy into any sort of conclusion that this means that cutting back doesn’t help but helps to show there is a basic system cost below which you cannot sink without a radical tinker.
However, one cannot help but come to the conclusion that the necessary response is to change the system; our individual energy expenditure levels are to a substantial degree attributable to an inefficient system. Having just experienced the European model (extensive transit and denser housing combined with smaller more numerous shops and streets which make walking a pleasure) where the most reasonable and pleasurable personal choices are also more environmentally friendly than the alternatives common here in Canada, it is obvious things could change for the better. My city encourages wastefulness and degradation in the way it subsidizes and continually improves avenues of personal auto use. Unless you are in either the few older neighborhoods or in the green spaces, walking is not all that pleasant. (Not that Spain is all peaches here; recycling is rare and the current water shortage is a result of unrestrained consumption in a fairly arid land.)