I sometimes come across Japanese articles bragging "dish washer is eco-friendly."
In the meantime, I bought "the complete idiot's guide to global warming" out of curiosity. It says that the dishwasher uses as much energy as cloth dryer or freezer. That's a lot.
Are they contradicting?
The reasoning for Japanese articles is because dishwasher only uses about 3 gallons of water/load, which is much less than hand washing. Plus, the machine is energy efficient. Therefore it has overall advantage over hand washing (which assumes hot water requiring energy).
We will need hard numbers to really determine whether the diswasher is truely eco-friendly or not. But there is one obvious difference in determining "what is a dishwasher by the way?": Japanese dishwasher is tiny!
This one is only 1.8'X1.1'X1.8'. Offered by National (domestic brand of Matsushita=Panasonic)
Complete idiots guide recommends using air drying head drying, scraping dishes off....but downsizing can be another easy solution. It doesn't need any cutting-edge technology.
And don't forget about the fridge! Fridges don't have to be as big as what we have.....in my opinion.
Home appliances, go lean!.....and it will probably keep the occupants virtually lean.