A lot of people have sent me e-mail about my negative viewpoints on a lot of the supposedly green technology that we use today. The fact is that many of these green technologies simply move pollution to someone else’s backyard and may actually increase the amount of pollution created, rather than reducing it. My latest essays on the topic appear in A Discussion About Green Technology Pollution and A Discussion About Green Technology Pollution (Part 2). I’m most definitely not against technologies that really are green—I’m just against technologies that pose as green when they really aren’t. The consequences of pseudo-green technologies are real. We’ll eventually pay for the pollution we’re creating and spilling into the air, water, and land.
I’ve noticed that more people are starting to see the same things I do when it comes to pollution. The article I like best in this category is Study: Your all-electric car may not be so green from the Associated Press. Although the article doesn’t even begin to discuss the sources of pollution that electric cars generate (such as those rare earth mines in various parts of the world), it does point out that even the electricity is dirty. An electric car powered by electricity from a coal-fueled plant produces 3.6 times the amount of pollution as a gasoline car. If you absolutely must attack the problems created by gasoline fueled cars, use a hybrid instead. No, it doesn’t get rid of the pollution produced by materials used to build the car, but at least it actually does produce less pollution locally.
Some readers have pointed out that there is some speculation that the whole global warming debate is a fraud. There is even some discussion that governments are stepping in and simply telling anyone who works for the government not to tall about global warming at all. Yes, the debate has proven difficult and will remain difficult as some researchers begin to claim that we’re actually going to experience a cooling trend in the near future. The fact is that few people actually have the knowledge required to make a guess and my understanding is that no one has actually accumulated enough information to prove the issue one way or the other. What I do know is that it’s a bad idea to keep spewing contaminants into our environment. You can see the effects of pollution all around you.
This all leads me back to my basic premise about pollution. You need to make it personal. Deciding how pollution affects you personally can help direct your efforts in making our world a cleaner place to live. Doing things like turning off lights you don’t need, driving only when you actually need to, and lowering the thermostat a few degrees will all help. Your personal gain from such efforts is the money you’ll save and the health you’ll keep. Using fewer resources means having more money in your pocket for the things you’d like to have. Less pollution means that you’ll have a longer, healthier life.
What is your take on the claims to green technology that really isn’t? There currently aren’t any laws that specifically keep a manufacturer from claiming that a technology is green when it really isn’t. I’d like to see laws that place the burden of proof on the manufacturer. Before a product is sold as being green, the manufacturer should have to prove that it’s not only manufactured in ways that will produce less pollution (something that is nearly impossible right now), but that using the item will also produce less pollution and that the product’s eventual disposal will help keep pollution under control as well. Let me know your thoughts on the topic at John@JohnMuellerBooks.com.