Wednesday, 6 July 2011

Not thinking it through – unintended consequences

In a bid to rid the world’s rubbish dumps of plastic, a way was found to make the substance biodegradable. This was hailed as ‘a good idea’ and rigorously, vigorously advertised and implemented.

Unfortunately, in the process of degrading, plastic gives off methane which contributes more effectively to global warming than carbon dioxide. Some dumps harvest the methane and utilise it but most don’t, so instead of methane being put to good use – for example, in heating buildings – it is contributing to the ever-growing problem of the thinning of the ozone layer.

18 comments:

  1. I'm thinking we should go back to the glass milk jugs that were returnable. But, sadly, they are not convenient to the store or companies.

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  2. I remember very well the days where plastic didn't exist and sandwiches were wrapped in simple paper. My mother did her shopping with a bag and then suddenly we were all forced to use plastic bags. Now we go back to the past and not to the future ! But the dammage is done !

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  3. Looks like the atmosphere just can't win, Janice. One of these days it's going to give up and surrender. Then where will we be?
    — K

    Kay, Alberta, Canada
    An Unfittie's Guide to Adventurous Travel

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  4. All for the sake of making life easy we screw up our future...same can be said for everyday people. It is all about the moment...

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  5. Every new fix seems to cause more trouble. I think the glass idea is a good one.

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  6. I didn't know this. Thanks!!!

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  7. thought-provoking - we are simply not smart enough or we don't think to the long term

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  8. We need to go back to reusable glass bottles

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  9. The "smarter" we become, the dumber we get.

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  10. You don't know whether to laugh or cry.

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  11. we never do our homework!!

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  12. Now this is really depressing!

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  13. Sometimes I think "they" are not so much looking for good ideas as ideas that can be presented as "good".

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  14. I didn't know this. Good point. I think we have entirely too much packaging of everything and not nearly enough recycling. Eventually, necessity will send us in a different direction - if mankind survives long enough.

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  15. We have met the enemy and it is ourselves. One would think there would be a way to utilize the plastics to produce efficient, useable energy, a method that every city would use.

    Of course the easiest way is for all of us to stop, or at least cut way back, buying plastic containers. I don't buy bottled water and I take my own reusable bags to the grocery store.

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