18seconds.org

With much fan-fare, Yahoo just launched 18seconds.org, in partnership with a network of businesses, government agencies and nonprofits, including Wal-Mart and the EPA. The purpose of the website is to raise awareness about global warming and demonstrate how one small action — taking 18 seconds to change a conventional incandescent bulb to an ENERGY STAR labeled compact fluorescent light bulb (CFL) — can significantly reduce environmental impact.

This movement is about empowering the individual — to say to every person in America that with one easy step, they can become part of a movement that will literally change the world,” said Lawrence Bender, network member and Academy Award-winning producer of the Oscar-nominated documentary “An Inconvenient Truth.” “I believe the CFL is the Trojan horse into the minds of the American public. Once you get somebody who feels good about making a difference and at the same time saving money, you have them thinking about what else they can do.”

The group is using data of store sales compiled by Nielsen to track progress towards selling 300 million compact fluorescents. A very worthwhile goal.

The site looks great and the badge widget is even cooler. (If they develop a widget for wordpress, I would love to add it to this blog.) But while I applaud the strategy of having a focused message about easy actions, the site suffers from what ails so many other global warming campaigns… what does it actually accomplish? Unlike Yahoo’s Earth Day site You can’t even make a pledge on this site.

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