"Air conditioning's environmental damage is not limited to emissions of greenhouse gases and ozone-depleting chemicals," says writer Stan Cox, whose book Losing Our Cool: Uncomfortable Truths About Our Air-Conditioned World is generating a buzz in America. "Lavish deployment of indoor climate control may indeed make it possible for us to live anywhere on the planet, but is that wise?" Indeed, from the sun-scorched deserts of Dubai to the sands of Arizona (the "air conditioning capital of the world"), inappropriately designed and located construction requires yet more refrigeration. Artificial cooling links arms with global warming – the higher the temperatures, the more cooling we need – in a chilling positive-feedback hoedown.
Lee Kwan Yew said that air conditioning was the single most important development that allowed Singapore to develop as it had. Having lived there I think I agree with him.