“The modern built environment in the United States is now totally dependent on air conditioning. A lot of our buildings would be uninhabitable in the summer without AC, and all of the electricity needed to keep it running.”
Like so many 99 percent invisible podcasts, this blends urban design, social geography, local history in a way that deepens our understanding of place. Air conditioning has powerfully reshaped so many geographic patterns that many of ways. Some mentioned in this podcast include: a) the rapid expansion of the Sun Belt, b) less climatically and regionally distinctive architecture can now be found in the cultural landscape, and c) an enormous amount of energy is consumed to maintain our hyper-cooled buildings (the U.S. now uses as much electricity for air conditioning as it did for all purposes in 1955).