Re: The Plastics Recycling Ploy

Bill Sheehan (
Fri, 12 Nov 1999 01:04:50 -0500

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Sent: Friday, November 12, 1999 12:50 AM
Subject: Re: Fw: greenyes-d Digest V99 #334

Thanks for the plastics commentary from Alan Silverman. His most telling
line is the last: "economics determines all." As a corporate financial
officer, I find this concept amusing. The whole of human economic activity
is built on developing and using and reusing and recycling resources, and
providing innumerable services based on using tools made from resources.
Policies and politics can skew and artificially raise or lower resources'
economic values in large and small economic structures, but in the end the
only "real world" is the natural world.

What really determines all is the longterm health of the global ecosystem.
The current incarnation of the plastics industry degrades the ecosystem. So
whatever narrow or short-term focus one adopts in the effort to ignore that
overarching fact, and whatever fancy technical footwork one uses to dance
around the plastics ring, Mother Nature always gets in the last punch.

By the way, Mr. Silverman never mentions why jackets or carpets need to made
of plastic at all. He also fails to say anything about how plastics can be
made from renewable resources, and how those plastics can be composted.

So plastics need not be terrible for all time, as long as making them
deprive anyone of food. They could be the basis for giant sustainable

More power to Terrain and the Ecology Center for telling the truth.

Mary Lou Van Deventer
Chief Financial Officer
Urban Ore, Inc.