GreenYes Archives

[GreenYes Archives] - [Thread Index] - [Date Index]
[Date Prev] - [Date Next] - [Thread Prev] - [Thread Next]

RE: [greenyes] RE: Cheeks and Recycling

Global regulation standards to protect human health, labor, the
environment, and to prevent monopolies could be put into effect through
bilateral or multilateral trade agreements and organizations such as the
WTO, if their goal was sustainability of markets in the long term.
Unfortunately, it seems that shorter-sighted policymakers choose to
emphasize "unfettered trade" and the removal of "trade barriers" that
include regulations that may be there for a good (non-protectionist)
reasons. So they let the market create a race to the bottom of
regulatory standards, and the market doesn't often react until a
resource has been seriously depleted and larger problems have been

While the decline of oil production may not have begun to happen (or
perhaps it has), it would be nice if we as a civilization could prepare
and plan with vision of the future instead of always waiting for the
market to react. The problem with using markets to create our future is
that they are reactive by nature, and sometimes they don't react until
irreparable damage (such as species extinction, ecosystem loss, climate
change or the running out of oil after you set up a global system to run
on it) has been done.

One potential result of the impending decline in oil production will be
the need to make more products locally. In some ways, for energy or
petrochemical intensive products and services, it could possibly throw
globalization into reverse. We do not have a sufficient backup energy
and chemical industry plan in place - alternative energy and
conservation technology need much more development. We may not be able
to cheaply transport some products halfway around the world, and
petrochemical intensive products will become more expensive. The market
will react by looking for local and/or alternative products.

What does this mean for recycling? More local markets for materials.
In addition, more resource efficiency in general - by necessity.

Terry S. Brennan
Integrated Waste Management Specialist
California Integrated Waste Management Board
phone (916) 341-6578
fax (916) 319-7474
e-mail tbrennan@no.address

Zero Waste - You make it happen!

-----Original Message-----
From: Eric Lombardi [mailto:eric@no.address]
Sent: Monday, April 25, 2005 4:00 PM
To: 'Peter Anderson'; 'GreenYes'
Subject: [greenyes] RE: Cheeks and Recycling

I want to jump in to support Peter's point about why recycling in
America is still fighting and LOSING ground instead of leading us toward
a more sustainable future. I was there "in the day" for solar in the
70's, and it was the same kind of collapse in the 80's and 90's. Why?
Because the market price of the alternative is too damn low! I won't
call oil or landfills "competition" since they are a fundamentally
different way of living on this planet than what recycling and solar can
offer... and that is where the debate must go. Once we as a society
decide what our public policy goals are, and maybe we'll just decide
that clean air, groundwater and local economies are important, then we
need to "change the rules" so that the market economics rewards the
clean market leaders.

The real revolution to protect our natural places and our children's
bodies is an economic revolution ... what are the rules for making
money? And, here's the tough part, the Age of Globalization means the
new rules need to go global.


Eric Lombardi
Executive Director
Eco-Cycle Inc

-----Original Message-----
From: Peter Anderson [mailto:anderson@no.address]
Sent: Monday, April 25, 2005 3:55 PM
To: GreenYes
Subject: [greenyes] Evangelicals - Threat or Promise

Dave and Doug have taken exception to the caption I included as a lead
in the Rolling Stones article on evangelicals' political plans.

Dave says he has no intention of turning the other cheek: and Doug says

has nothing to do with recycling. Briefly in reply--

CHEEKS. Although I am quite irreligious in the institutional sense,
I have done quite a bit of reading, because -- notwithstanding the

to which he has been put-- Jesus is an incredible historic figure in the
history of social and moral change. In the context of his times, turning

other cheek was not a meek and passive act...doing so to the Romans was
a well known showing of defiance, much like Ghandi's salt protest. In
hindsight, perhaps though I should have better mentioned his use of the

agape for the basis of a new relationship with former enemies, which is
usually translated as love, but in Greek really means unconditional
love, which is something so much more and transcendent. But, at this
point, I fear digressing too much, and ask anyone who wants to delve
into that to email me directly.

RECYCLING. Inasmuch as recycling, except for non-ferrous metals and
high grade papers, continues to hang on by its tenterhooks, more than 15
years after the beginning of the modern era of recycling, we have to ask

if we are going to, ourselves, be sustainable. I believe the answer
lies in

the fact that the things we compete against, virgin materials and
disposal, are drastically underpriced because the wrong people have
controlled the political levers. That is to say, our fate lies in public
policy, and in that arena, we are today being eaten alive. Unless we
delve in to learn why

and act on those lessons, we will be doomed to dwell on the minutia of
recycling as it inevitably declines over time. Our fate lies in the
fundamentals of our society not the nuts and bolts of our industry.
Note that we can ever forget about doing what we can to tighten the
screws, but not at the expense of forgetting the wider tableau where the
things are decided that will determine our success. Ditto for what is
needed to right the ship: we are sinking, not listing, and refining our
message doesn't begin to reach the depth of our problems: fundamental
political changes in tectonics are what is needed.


Peter Anderson, President
4513 Vernon Blvd. Suite 15
Madison, WI 53705-4964
Ph: (608) 231-1100
Fax: (608) 233-0011
Cell: (608) 698-1314
eMail: anderson@no.address

This message, and all attachments thereto, is covered by the Electronic
Communications Privacy Act, 18 U.S.C., Sections 2510-2521.
This message is CONFIDENTIAL. If you are not the intended recipient of
this message, then any retention, dissemination, distribution or copying
of this communication is strictly prohibited. Please notify me if you
received this message in error at anderson@no.address and then
delete it.

[GreenYes Archives] - [Date Index] - [Thread Index]
[Date Prev] - [Date Next] - [Thread Prev] - [Thread Next]