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Showing posts from December, 2009

The Cult of Self Sustainability (updated March 2011)

When it comes to climate change, the 'doing our bit' approach to saving the planet has more in common with medieval theology than it does with any kind of progress in reducing global emissions. As a response to manmade climate change, the 'Cult of Self Sustainability' is ineffective, self indulgent and downright dangerous.
Like our more pious ancestors who struggled to adhere to the rules of Christian morality, it is virtually impossible for the majority of us to live a carbon free lifestyle. Eat meat? A kilogram of beef has the same footprint as a three hour car journey. Vegetarian? You might eat a lot of cheese and yogurt and many these products have a larger footprint than eating poultry. Drink alcohol? It's produced from crops grown on land that could otherwise be used for food or that could have been preserved as forest. Own a pet? The carbon footprint of a dog can nullify whatever efforts you've made to live sustainably. And wherever you are, it's pret…