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Chanukah: The Holiday of Energy Conservation

By David Krantz

NEW YORK (Nov. 30, 2010) — Chanukah isn’t just our Festival of Lights — it’s our Holiday of Energy Conservation. And the Maccabees are the answer to climate change. Think about it: They made one day’s worth of oil last for eight days! If we conserved energy like the Maccabees did, we could put OPEC out of business.


The Maccabees did it with a miracle; we can do it through small changes.


The Green Zionist Alliance is working to conserve Israel’s energy through transitioning buildings to energy-efficient lighting and agency fleets to fuel-efficient vehicles while installing energy-generating solar panels on rooftops and constructing bike trails. You can do some of these things too — and you needn’t stop there. Carpool, bike, walk or take public transit instead of driving alone. Throw on a sweater instead of turning up the heat. Turn off the lights when you’re not in the room. Buy locally grown food instead of food shipped in from across the country or around the world. Unplug appliances when you’re not using them. Turn off the TV altogether and read a book instead. These are all small, doable changes that can add up to one big change.


On the first Chanukah, the Maccabees cut their energy usage by nearly 90 percent. This Chanukah, can you meet the Maccabees’ challenge?



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David Krantz is the president and chairperson of Aytzim: Ecological Judaism.




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