Carbon Footprint =’s Mostly Bullshit

I just read a very interesting article in The New Yorker titled Big Foot.  This article discusses the complexities of computing this elusive individualistic, often pointless, abstract concept called “carbon footprint.”  The article begins by discussing the massive British supermarket chain Tesco and their goal of putting a carbon contribution label on every product they sell.  I was pleasantly surprised to hear that Tesco was taking climate change so seriously.  However, as the article moved on it became apparent that Tesco had no idea how complex it would be to accurately label their product’s carbon contribution.  The article also questions whether this is the best method to react to climate change.  The article discusses in detail the power of using economics to control the problem by creating a carbon emissions marker.  The article continues to explain how important the tropical rain forests are as a carbon sponge and if we just paid Indonesia and Brazil to keep their forests intact we would have the battle half won.  Here is an excerpt:

From both a political and an economic perspective, it would be easier and cheaper to reduce the rate of deforestation than to cut back significantly on air travel. It would also have a far greater impact on climate change and on social welfare in the developing world. Possessing rights to carbon would grant new power to farmers who, for the first time, would be paid to preserve their forests rather than destroy them. Unfortunately, such plans are seen by many people as morally unattractive. “The whole issue is tied up with the misconceived notion of ‘carbon colonialism,’ ” Niles told me. “Some activists do not want the Third World to have to alter their behavior, because the problem was largely caused by us in the West.”

This sounds like a sound argument to me. The West pays the less developed countries to not cut down the forests. However, this solution does not address the overarching problem of our overly consumptive lifestyle.I like how this article discusses ways we as a society can try to respond to global warming and not lay all this focus on the individual’s decisions. It may sound like I am trying to justify my own “carbon footprint” but in reality this notion of the carbon footprint takes the focus away from finding larger solutions and attempts to lay a guilt trip on the people. This is a much more complex issue and we cannot rely on individual’s guilt to address it. I strongly recommend reading this article if you are interested in this topic.


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11 Responses to “Carbon Footprint =’s Mostly Bullshit”

  1. heuuwrywu Says:

    jhuih7uio5def8in jbk,;/.,g,kjhruyi6utiwgke5r

  2. Jeff Says:

    “Carbon Footprint” is a phrase made up by the warmists. (Socialists and world government advocates.)
    Carbon in the form of CO2 is good. I often buy a cylinder or two and just release it freely into the atmosphere around my home. I want to do my part to forestall the inevitable coming ice age, and meanwhile encourage the earth to be greener. (Plants love the stuff.) I’ve been driving a Ford Expedition around solo as well. This was not of my choice.. I prefer small fast cars. My company leased it and I drive it to and from my mining job without the slightest twinge of guilt. We are ripping up the earth at a rate of about 24,000 tons per day. This is to get metal that society needs to make things like ambulances, medical instruments and little girl’s bicycles.

  3. Anonymous Says:

    im nuclear ua

  4. Anonymous Says:

    fu &carbon tooim poed

  5. joe Says:

    Carbon is cool. Imagine surfing on tropical beaches in Alaska. Cool man!

  6. Shinku Says:

    Too bad the idea that CO2 is the major cause of global warming has been thoroughly been discredited (And basic Science debunks it). The ocean and the sun is the cause of cooling and warming. Our orbit around the sun changes thanks to Jupiter. so really What we do in this planet is actually very insignificant.

  7. Pretorix Says:

    Love Jeff’s comment 🙂

    In my opinion it is not the discussion whether CO2 (and equivalents) are causing global warming or not. Fact is, we’re burning up fossil fuels at such high rate we might not have enough left to drive Ford Expeditions in the future… Contrary to Jeff, I love my Excursion ;).

  8. caroline Says:

    Thank you guys for making my day with ur comments, hahaha. but this carbon footprint really is bs. i have to find an article and chose this, plus your comments. my teacher even said that carbon footprint is just a bunch of crap to me. but if she told everyone else, they wouldnt have done this stupid hw

  9. TheSouthernNationalist Says:

    No one has even given a thought that earth is a living being (planet)
    and goes through changes just like we do, there is nothing we can do to hurt this giant creation, we are only specks to it.

  10. Joe Says:

    LOL! Al Gore, what a joke!

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