Wretched Excess: The SUV's of Appliances


Anyone who thinks that the mainstream is going green just because Vanity Fair, Elle and Wired cover it should think again. This is what the mainstream still aspires to: monster appliances for monster homes. "The trend is this big, huge, bold, massive look," says Don Strobel, a remodeler in St. Petersburg, Fla. Stoves with 30,000 BTU burners (four times the standard) that heat not only your food but the entire climate. 40 cubic foot refrigerators that can fit 24 soda cans lined up side by side. Of course there is a price to pay- possibly new gas lines to the street, and of course much higher use of electricity. And guess what General Electric just ecoimagined: a six foot wide, 41 cubic foot double door fridgecosting $13,900 . "People are just bowled over when they walk in and see these big commercial fridges and cooktops," says Anne Grasser, a builder in Flagstaff, Ariz., who was admiring GE's 72-inch refrigerator at last week's show. "I'm getting the feeling there's no such thing as too big." ::Wall Street Journal