Monday, June 09, 2008

Politics and GreenWash

I've always been interested by ecology, tryign to do my bit -like leaving a camping/picinic site cleaner than when I arrived. But my green attitude is based on common sense, not on any form of green religion inspired by city-luddites, the kind of people who were trotskyst before, green priests now and impose on others their attitude of green moral superiority.

For instance, at a time where we had agricultural surpluses subsidised by the EU, it only made sense to me that we should do biofuels. The current debate now about sustanability of biofuels comes from a herd movement towards biofuels when the infrastructure is not there.

Then the polititians came in and suddenly started to talk green. The only issue is that for politicians, it seems that Green = More Taxes. And we only see tax, tax, tax -but still no rail infrastructures
or maybe the're taxing the wrong stuff: Focussing on CO2: good for bears, bad for humans? Methane for instance stays in the atmosphere longuer than CO2: should we fit a meter at the back of each cow, or become vegeterians? (seems vegan is not a good idea...)

In my mind, it's not only taxes but there are many other ways of being greenner: microgeneration is one. The Guardian had a great full page article on how power from the people could cut CO2 emissions - with government help (shame the online version doesn't have the graphs).

But it seems the government is busy making broken promises and trying to substanciate the fact that Heathrow, thanks to its "Low Emission Zone" will be clean. In passing, we have to thank the EU for imposing stricter anti-pollution norms... (and NB: no, curbing LHR's growth won't harm the capital because it's only one of the FIVE London airports).

This is why I've become highly suspicious of Green Politicians: to me they will provoke a backlash and what they decide isn't even good for the environment.

PS: but kudos to Westminster to allow cyclists use one way streets riding counterflow. This is commen sense, doesn't cost anything and works (just go to The Hague if you don't belive me).

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