Oh, We Got Trouble — With a Capital T and That Rhymes with P and That Stands for Population
Re: Daily Grist
What a great magazine! Now that I subscribe to the Daily Gist, I clutch my cuppa java as I pass through your cloud of gloom. Better gloom than darkness.
However, I’m mystified that we don’t hear more about the big P — population. Why? All these summits, all this talk of global warming, fossil fuels, salmon runs, river and stream restoration, deforestation, toxic waste, disappearing species, yadda yadda yadda. Meanwhile, more and more people gobble up more food, fuel, forests, water, and resources of every sort, while creating sewage, impenetrable surfaces, factory waste, and so on. Seems that the most serious problems are those stemming from growing demands of growing populations. That and the fact that nearly everyone either does or wants to live a U.S.A. lifestyle (I’m a does-er).
Are we hiding our heads in the sand, loam, clay, granite … ? Are we paying no attention to the man behind the curtain? I realize that you are pooling daily environmental articles that seem worth noting. But why the silence (not necessarily yours) surrounding this huge, underlying issue? One would think that the mega-companies might be glad for all the stir about environmental issues, a diversion that curtains their eagerness for more and more consumers. Who’s going to say, “The Emperor has too many kids!” Bill McKibben makes his statement, but we need to crank up the audio on this one.
I find it intriguing and painful that environmental groups like Ozone Action choose to target Al Gore. What this does is create a perception in the public mind of, “Well, I guess Al Gore is not all that different from George W.” Why not target Bush and let the public see that our choices are real and significant even if Gore is not everything we want?
David A. Wilson
St. Louis, Mo.
The daily diary from Betsy Taylor of the Center for the New American Dream was superb. Keep finding people like her.
Love where she talked about the importance of silence. The most effective and scary silence I’ve ever seen was on ABC this New Years Day as they showed the complete silence of a Somalian refugee camp at midnight. Totally chilling. Finally TV doing something right.
Santa Ana, Calif.
Ms. Meadows does a good job of pointing out the differences between the philosophies of the Dalai Lama and the philosophies of the modern media. It is true that the modern media diverts our attention away from what is really important and focuses our attention on material possessions, thus destroying our peace of mind. Thanks for the good article!
This is the kind of reporting that our general press and the environmental community needs. I wrote about the birds and wind power controversy seven years ago, when the Massachusetts Audubon Society was proud to have a wind farm as a neighbor while the National Audubon Society was against wind. At the same time, we heard Appalachian Mountain Club representatives speak in favor of nuclear power near cities as an alternative to wind farms near mountains.
Environmental progress must include businesses. Sustainable development is based on the premise of development. If wind farms cannot be developed to replace fossil-fuel and nuclear-power plants, what power sources will be used? If businesses are unable to adopt products and approaches that are more environmentally friendly, because only the environmentally perfect will be accepted, businesses will not be able to contribute to solutions.
Thank you for Peter’s article.
Thanks for running this piece.
I was at the Solar Lobby in the 1970s, Western SUN in the 1980s, and Kenetech in the 1990s. Getting vilified for long-held beliefs in the need for renewables was pretty interesting. Especially now that, after Altamont, extensive time is being spent assessing wind power sites for avian issues.
As new data comes out on the impact of wind turbines on birds, I hope you will seek out stories that (hopefully) show dramatic reductions in avian mortality.
Director, Resource Development Department
Klickitat County, Washington