Spamming the Globe
Until now, we've thought of spam as virtual pollution. It turns out that all those annoying e-mails blight not only our inboxes but also the atmosphere. According to a report by McAfee, maker of spam-blocking software, Americans got 62 trillion junk e-mails in 2008.
All those male-enhancement testimonials and Nigerian investment opportunities wasted enough electricity to power 2.4 million U.S. homes for a year. The three seconds it takes to review and delete a spam message emits a 0.3-gram puff of carbon dioxide -- equal to driving a car three feet. Americans collectively spend 100 billion aggravating hours per year shedding unwanted e-mails.