Want to Save the Planet? It's Easy, Stop Consuming Needless Crap and Just Slow Down

Mr. Peabody's coaltrain hauling our future away.

IPCC's Fifth Assessment Report (AR5) says greenhouse gases emissions grew twice as fast in the first decade of the 21st century as they did during the previous three decades. The reports says at least 50% of that increase is caused by coal used to generate electricity to power factories in China, India and other rising economies that produce goods for US, Canadian, European and other 1st world consumers. "A growing share of CO2 emissions from fossil fuel combustion in developing countries is released in the production of goods and services exported to high-income countries," the report says.

Meanwhile we in the west who are both the consumers of the needless crap and, especially in the U.S. Canada, and Austrailia's cases, the providers of the coal, gloat about our emissions and sneer at those of China and others. We, the gloaters, the outsourcers are the problem. The outsourcing of emissions has skewed efforts to account for all global emissions, which typically was conducted on a national basis. Those accounting efforts are no longer accurate, according to analysts. The skewed analysis is one of the biggest reasons why the IPCC's politically based consensus reports are meaningless.

First world consumers buying the needless crap, in addition to putting their neighbors out of work from what was once a decent paying domestic manufacturing job are also breathing the polluted air coming back across the Pacific, and eventually around the globe, from Asia's 'low cost' production facilities in addition to the all the other nightmares engulfing fair Gaia that economists call externalities. Our coal follies smell like deceitful crap because they are. It's karma, writ large

As The Dogwood Initiative's article 'Coal, B.C.'s Dirty Secret' says, "Canada's justification that this coal is being burned elsewhere is disingenuous, the accounting rules veil which jurisdictions are truly responsible for producing and exporting toxic products that warm the planet and threaten the future of our children and grandchildren. It’s similar to Colombian cocaine cartels or Asian heroin growers claiming they have no responsibility, because most of their addictive products are consumed in other countries. Imagine if they said, "We don’t use it, we just sell it."

Up here in Canuckistan our fossil fuel industries pollute our groundwater and our air in order to export as much cheap energy as fast as possible to Asians who use it to manufacture the goods that consumers go into debt slavery to buy. Most of our kids work at low wage service jobs or not at all while the gluttonous rich get richer as the corrupted government regulations serve up their future to the corporations.

To quote Adam Brandt, an energy expert at Stanford University, "So long as the demand is there, energy producers are going to search for new supplies of fossil fuel. Can environmental groups expect to win a series of fights for decades to come, when the economic forces are aligned very strongly against them in each round? The answer is obvious: no. The emphasis should be on demand, not supply".

As the Mud Report has written ad nauseum 'Demand Drives Every Market, the Solution to Pollution is to Stop Consuming Needless Crap'. Every market exchange can, according to the dismal science, can be reduced to supply and demand. Demand is the driver, supply grows and slows to meet it. To conclude, folks need to stop driving to the mall, stop consuming needless crap and just slow down.