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InvisibleXlea321
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Registered: 02/26/01
Posts: 9,134
Consumers will save environment?
    #1668529 - 06/28/03 03:36 AM (13 years, 5 months ago)

Looks like the capitalist theory that consumers are saving us all from environmental destruction was complete and utter bullshit after all:

The great rainforest tragedy

By Michael McCarthy, Environment Editor
28 June 2003

Of all the world's great environmental tragedies it is the most compelling, and yesterday the deforestation of the Amazon was shown to be taking a huge turn for the worse.

After falling or staying steady for the past eight years, the rate at which Brazil's rainforest is disappearing has leapt by 40 per cent in a single year - and Europe's intensive farming may be a contributory cause.

Vast new tracts of virgin forest in the states of Mato Grosso and Para are being put to the chainsaw, according to figures from the Brazilian government, and turned into farmland - much of it used for growing soya beans, which end up as industrial cattle feed in Europe.

What is being destroyed is the most species-rich habitat on Earth. It provides much of the world's oxygen. It has been the subject of more green protests, and had more voices raised in its defence, than any other piece of ground on the planet. They seem to have availed it nothing.

Data from Brazil's National Institute for Space Research, based on satellite observations, reveal that in the year to August 2002 the amount of rainforest cut down was 25,500 square kilometres, or 10,190 square miles - an area about the size of Belgium. This has leapt from the previous year, when the area cut down had been 18,170 sq km (7,266 sq miles), an area about the size of Wales.

The more recent total was the second highest in the whole 30-year saga of Amazonian deforestation, exceeded only by the exceptional year to August 1995, when 29,059 sq km (12,200 sq miles) were destroyed. Since then the figure has dropped and remained steady at about 18,000 sq km - giving people some hope that the situation was not as hopelessly out of control as once it seemed to be.

But now the sudden increase in the deforestation rate has appalled even hardened Amazon-watchers. "This is shocking," said Mario Monzoni, a project co-ordinator for Friends of the Earth in Brazil. "The rate of deforestation should be falling; instead the opposite is happening."

Brazil's Environment Minister, Marina Silva, herself a former rubber tapper from the Amazon who also worked as a maid by day, said there would be "emergency action to deal with this highly worrying rise in deforestation". Promising an announcement next week, she said the government was considering real-time monitoring of deforestation and, for the first time in Brazil, to force all ministries to consider the environment when enacting policies.

All those who care for the Amazon will warmly welcome her comments, but not hold out excessive hope. The social and economic forces behind deforestation are stupendous, and for three decades have been far beyond the ability of bureaucrats in Brasilia or Sao Paulo to control them. In a huge country with a burgeoning population and oppressive poverty there is insatiable hunger for land, and the Amazon provides a ready answer.

It can take a lot of punishment - its rainforest covers 60 per cent of the territory of Brazil and extends for 1.6 million sq miles, an area as big as western Europe. But already about 16 per cent of it has been destroyed for development, logging and most of all farming.

There now seems to be a new and even more intense agricultural advance into the treeline, especially from large-scale growers of soya beans. Brazil is expected to overtake US soya production in a few years, making it the world's leading producer of a crop that offers its farmers large profits and gives a sizeable boost to its national trade accounts.

David Cleary, director of the Amazon programme at the Brazilian office of the Nature Conservancy, the US green charity, said that last year's deforestation figures were at least 30 or 40 per cent higher than historical trends. "It's clear that the soya boom is an important element of this in the southern Amazon, and if ways are not found to minimise the impact it is difficult to see these figures falling in coming years," he said.

We may have a role in this ourselves. Much of the soya bean crop is exported to Europe as part of the 55 million tonnes of cattle feed the EU imports annually, attracting strong criticism from environmentalists, who say it is promoting industrial factory farming as well as helping to subsidise rainforest destruction.

That destruction seems even worse if you clothe the new raw data with a little imagination. At the new rate, about 28 sq miles of forest is being obliterated every day. How many trees in 28 square miles, an area seven miles long by four miles wide? A thousand? Ten thousand? Fifty thousand, more? Doesn't matter. They'll all be down by the end of today.

And what a forest it is, containing about 30 per cent of all the world's known plant and animal species, besides the uncatalogued insects, which may run into many millions. There are about 80,000 species of trees and flowering plants; in a single hectare of forest there may be as many as 300 tree species, more than 10 times that in the most diverse North American forest. There are more than 2,000 species of birds, almost a quarter of the world's total; there are 2,000 species of freshwater fish and more than 3,000 species of mammals, reptiles and amphibians, ranging from the jaguar to the poison-arrow frog.

And now the chainsaws are slicing it down at a rate that could only be described as frenzied. It is the great green lung of the world, the Amazon rainforest, and the shadow on it is advancing unstoppably.

http://news.independent.co.uk/world/environment/story.jsp?story=419695


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Offlineatomikfunksoldier
T'was born oftrue in the yearof the cock!

Registered: 04/07/03
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Re: Consumers will save environment? [Re: Xlea321]
    #1668694 - 06/28/03 05:23 AM (13 years, 5 months ago)

well, marine algae produces 80% of the worlds oxygen, so fuck the rainforest anyways, turn it into strip malls, the ocean is more important.

get 2 of every animal, and copy their genetic codes so the species will never go extinct.


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Anonymous

Re: Consumers will save environment? [Re: Xlea321]
    #1668941 - 06/28/03 09:23 AM (13 years, 5 months ago)

Looks like the capitalist theory that consumers are saving us all from environmental destruction was complete and utter bullshit after all:

alex, one look at the state of the environment will show you that consumers are not saving the planet. the capitalist position is not that consumers are saving the environment, but that whatever happens to the environment, bad or good, ultimately rests on the consumer. you have trouble comprehending things.


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OfflineEllis Dee
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Re: Consumers will save environment? [Re: ]
    #1669590 - 06/28/03 03:54 PM (13 years, 5 months ago)

Coming from a family of soybean farmers I'm aware that people have to make a living. Soybeans make oxygen too. It's not just trees that do that.


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"If the foundations be destroyed, what can the righteous do."-King Solomon

And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels,


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Invisibleangryshroom
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Re: Consumers will save environment? [Re: Xlea321]
    #1669735 - 06/28/03 05:25 PM (13 years, 5 months ago)

Consumers aren't going to help save the environment. When you buy something its usually packaged, whcih was packaged and packaged and packaged ... pretty soon you realize you cut down 40 trees for a bar of soap.


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Anonymous

Re: Consumers will save environment? [Re: angryshroom]
    #1669786 - 06/28/03 06:01 PM (13 years, 5 months ago)

and this could either be stopped by consumers purchasing products with minimal packaging or voting in laws reducing packaging.

either way, democracy and capitalism leave this up to the consumers, who are a poorly informed, selfish, and apathetic lot.


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InvisibleXlea321
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Re: Consumers will save environment? [Re: ]
    #1669856 - 06/28/03 06:55 PM (13 years, 5 months ago)

No, they're just too busy trying to survive. They don't have the time to research every product on earth, how it was created, where each company gets it's packaging from, how this affects the environment, campaigning for years to alert the population of the country to this problem, (by which time a whole list of other packaging problems might have appeared), campaigning for a vote, hoping the vote gets passed into law without appeals from big business that tie up the process up for decades etc etc etc.

It simply isn't practical and, unlike genuine pollution controls, has little chance of ever affecting big business profits. Which is probably why some silly right-winger thought it up in the first place.


--------------------
Don't worry, B. Caapi


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OfflineBaby_Hitler
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Re: Consumers will save environment? [Re: Xlea321]
    #1669871 - 06/28/03 07:02 PM (13 years, 5 months ago)

I actually agree with you on this one. Not every goal can be achieved by people in their role as "consumer".


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Invisiblez@z.com
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Re: Consumers will save environment? [Re: Xlea321]
    #1669886 - 06/28/03 07:07 PM (13 years, 5 months ago)

Quote:

Alex123 said:
It simply isn't practical and, unlike genuine pollution controls, has little chance of ever affecting big business profits.



Why would you want to mess up their profits? That just doesn't make any sense. They will just raise prices.


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"Of all tyrannies, a tyranny exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It may be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron's cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end, for they do so with the approval of their own conscience." - C.S. Lewis

"I would rather be exposed to the inconveniencies attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it." - Thomas Jefferson


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Offlineatomikfunksoldier
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Re: Consumers will save environment? [Re: z@z.com]
    #1669899 - 06/28/03 07:13 PM (13 years, 5 months ago)

"and this could either be stopped by consumers purchasing products with minimal packaging or voting in laws reducing packaging."

i dont think it is a quite as simple as that. In the article it states that the amazon is being cut down to produce soybean for the meat industry, the meat industry ships meat to thousands of different bussinesses.

so, the consumer has no direct relationship with the deforestation, and it is impossible for them to choose which product that does not cause deforestation. So what a good consumer should do is find out which beef producer buys brazillian soy, and what bussinesses buy that beef, then organize a boycott against those businesses.

like I said, if there were large-scale consumer unions, shit like this could be easily stopped.


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enjoy the entertaining indentity i have constructed for you while you can.


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Anonymous

Re: Consumers will save environment? [Re: Xlea321]
    #1669998 - 06/28/03 08:20 PM (13 years, 5 months ago)

people aren't too busy trying to survive to make the connection that when you buy a gas-guzzling car, it guzzles gas. they're not so caught up in their hectic lives to realize that taking a half hour shower is a waste of water and that using paper plates at dinner every night probably isn't good for the trees.

they just don't give a fuck, and it's got little to do with how busy they are.

this would be another foray into the wild world of alexland, no? ah.. i see your position now... people, if they had the chance, would certainly have the foresight and altruism to make sacrifices and save the environment... but NO!! the evil corporations keep them so hard at work that they haven't the time to consider these things! the working class is too busy working for the bourgeoisie to consider the environment!!

right?  :smirk:


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InvisibleXlea321
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Registered: 02/26/01
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Re: Consumers will save environment? [Re: ]
    #1670767 - 06/29/03 03:37 AM (13 years, 5 months ago)

Do you actually believe this? You genuinely want zero pollution controls on any big business and instead think all pollution must be blamed on "the consumer"?

Jeez.


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Offlinesomebodyelse
In_Is_Out

Registered: 06/12/03
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Re: Consumers will save environment? [Re: Xlea321]
    #1670787 - 06/29/03 03:55 AM (13 years, 5 months ago)

Sing oh-la, overpopulation. (The smash hit of the 21st century)

We need the corporations to support our society on this scale. Unfortunately a) they don't do a very good job and nobody feels too great living on industrialized culture, and b) they are not running sustainably, and indeed are wreaking havoc on what appears to be our relatively sensitive ecosystem.

It's understandable that the corporations would be scapegoated, but unfortunately the whole system is so grounded that it would be impossible to remove them without a revolution with the guaranteed subsequent starvation of hundreds of millions of people. The simple fact is that corporations supply most of our food, our water, communication ability (phones, internet, mail) and mobility (cars, fuel, etc.) Thus while they are an easy target to pick at with lawsuits and whining, the simple fact is that system changing effort is best directed elsewhere. In first, is the maxim.



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Offlineatomikfunksoldier
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Re: Consumers will save environment? [Re: somebodyelse]
    #1670811 - 06/29/03 04:09 AM (13 years, 5 months ago)

consumer unions, i guarantee, will be the deciding factor in human the survival of civilization.


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Offlinesomebodyelse
In_Is_Out

Registered: 06/12/03
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Re: Consumers will save environment? [Re: atomikfunksoldier]
    #1670815 - 06/29/03 04:12 AM (13 years, 5 months ago)

Can you define a consumer union for me? What makes them that powerful?


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Offlineatomikfunksoldier
T'was born oftrue in the yearof the cock!

Registered: 04/07/03
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Re: Consumers will save environment? [Re: somebodyelse]
    #1670823 - 06/29/03 04:18 AM (13 years, 5 months ago)

consumers unite under a mission statement of economic sustainability. say, in canada (population...roughly 30 million) 1 million people join a national, well publicized consumer union. they produce a well publicized manifesto..say...we will not support corporations that deforest.

boom! 1 million consumers aged 18-45, thats a huge chunk of the market. so then, any corporation that doesnt stop deforestation is gonna feel the pain, and any corporation that sides with the consumer union is going to get a huge boost in profits.

its basically, an ongoing, well organized boycott. as it stands, boycotts are weak and chaotic, but if all people that are willing to boycott unite under one organization, theyre power will be maximized.

consumer unions can work in any area too, even if its 1000 people consumer union in a small town, they will have power.


--------------------
enjoy the entertaining indentity i have constructed for you while you can.


Edited by atomikfunksoldier (06/29/03 04:20 AM)


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Offlinesomebodyelse
In_Is_Out

Registered: 06/12/03
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Re: Consumers will save environment? [Re: atomikfunksoldier]
    #1670828 - 06/29/03 04:23 AM (13 years, 5 months ago)

How come I've never heard of them? Besides the obvious, I mean. What resources are there available? I could google, but if you have a favorite site or something I'll check it out.

Thanks.


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Offlineatomikfunksoldier
T'was born oftrue in the yearof the cock!

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Re: Consumers will save environment? [Re: somebodyelse]
    #1670856 - 06/29/03 04:45 AM (13 years, 5 months ago)

because the movement is just starting now, in fact, i never heard of it before me and a friend came up with the idea, and then when we researched, we found out that consumer unions are just gaining power in germany.



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enjoy the entertaining indentity i have constructed for you while you can.


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Anonymous

Re: Consumers will save environment? [Re: Xlea321]
    #1671046 - 06/29/03 09:26 AM (13 years, 5 months ago)

Do you actually believe this? You genuinely want zero pollution controls on any big business and instead think all pollution must be blamed on "the consumer"?

did i once say that i wanted that?


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InvisibleXlea321
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Registered: 02/26/01
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Re: Consumers will save environment? [Re: somebodyelse]
    #1671049 - 06/29/03 09:29 AM (13 years, 5 months ago)

It's understandable that the corporations would be scapegoated, but unfortunately the whole system is so grounded that it would be impossible to remove them without a revolution with the guaranteed subsequent starvation of hundreds of millions of people.

No need to remove them, just make them responsible for their actions.


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Don't worry, B. Caapi


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