Sunday, May 24, 2009

Environmentalism: today's LSD

Large, cold country has bigger carbon footprint for a reason
I always knew that if we just waited long enough, the enviro-twits would start self-selecting themselves from the gene pool.
This was inevitable, given the green movement's inability to grasp such complexities as cause and effect.
Remember when they started demanding better gas mileage in cars?
The U.S. government passed such laws and the car companies reacted by reducing the amount of metal in vehicles and making the cars smaller and smaller. Now there are automobiles on the road today that resemble nothing so much as a skateboard with a seatbelt and offer as much protection in a collision as a T-shirt against a .30-06 round.
Happy motoring, greenies! (Can I have your Blu-Ray when you get T-boned by a pickup?)
Their latest idiocy relates to the evils of plastic grocery bags.
If we take home our groceries in plastic bags, or so the argument goes, these plastic bags will then clog landfills.
While the reality is we don't actually have a shortage of landfill space and it costs more in terms of energy and environmental impact to recycle plastic bags into other plastic bags so ... never mind the facts. Reality isn't important.
What's important is that the Kool-Aid drinkers quit using plastic bags a while ago and switched to re-useable grocery bags.
And according to a recent study, when you examine these re-useable bags in the lab, you wind up with something worse than Courtney Love's latest blood test.
They are petri dishes replete with yeast, mould, bacteria and -- get this -- fecal matter.
Note to greenies: We know you hate toilet paper because trees die to make it, but given these findings, you might want to either start using the stuff or really, really, really, really wash your hands well after using the toilet ... or whatever waterless, ecofriendly, backyard composter you use.
Nearly 30% of the bags tested had bacterial contamination higher than that considered safe in drinking water.
By contrast, new plastic bags are clean.
So while the Kool-Aid drinkers throw their veggies into whatever toxic goo is growing in their re-useable bags, I'll stick to a nice, clean, plastic bag.
Bon appetit, folks.
Virtually simultaneously with this great news, the National Geographic has slammed Canada for its environmental choices compared to countries like India.
Apparently, in terms of environmental impact in the areas of housing, transportation, food and consumer goods, India is way ahead of us.
There's a very good reason for this.
We have houses designed to keep out excessive cold, heat and precipitation, which are then heated and/or cooled depending upon the season.
In Bangalore, for instance, on Friday, it was 26C and fell to a low of nearly 21C -- Brrrr!
Thursday night in Calgary?
Guess nobody had to crank the furnace up in Bangalore, eh?
And, as recent news footage has revealed, if you live in India and even appear in a wildly successful movie -- say, Slumdog Millionaire -- you can still wind up living in a structure that can only charitably be described as a shanty.
My kid has built forts in the backyard that appear more robust.
We use more energy and resources than the average Indian consumer because we're richer, live in a cold, nasty place that requires us to heat our homes, and we drive a lot because it's a big country and, well, because we can.
There's a reason we have so many Canadians of Indian descent in this country. It's because this is a better place to live ... no matter what the National Geographic says, and no matter how many plastic bags we use to tote home our groceries.

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