How I Celebrate Earth Week!
That is to say, I don’t. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for conservation and responsible use of resources. I don’t go around clubbing baby seals while driving a radioactive 73 cadillac made of asbestos or buying barrels of oil and dumping them in a nearby creek. I saw the crying Indian (ok, he turned out to be Italian or something) commercial when I was a tot and I don’t litter. But I don’t buy into all of this tinfoil hat wearing nonsense that is spewed out into the mediasphere during Earth Week. This type of kumbaya gong-banging is way past the point where normally the PC police would step in and rename the holiday so not to offend the perpetually offended crowd. Maybe they would call it Spherical Planetoid Day-Period and there would be guidelines on the do’s and don’ts of decorations and an unofficial potluck, like Winter Solstice or 4th Quarter Non-Aligned Merriment Day; whatever Christmas is called now.
Look, I support what works. Nuclear power = clean, efficient energy and the tech has gotten fantastic. Windmills and solar panels? Come on folks, unless you live in a place where the wind is constantly blowing, always sunny and you’re moderately well-off, you can’t make it work. Solar is still only 12 to 16 percent efficient and yes they have made some strides, but until they can beam solar power from space, it ain’t ready for powering an entire grid. We need what works now, not 20 years from now. Being “Green” means being wealthy. Only wealthy folks can afford the trappings of this new religion. Ask a person farming dirt in the dark in the Third World and he’ll thank you for a gas-powered generator. If you hand him a windmill or some solar panels he’ll probably club you and take your shoes.
I would take this crowd more seriously if they lived like they preach, ahem Al Gore? I mean, they should be scratching representations of solar panels on the walls of their yurt. Now if those who want to change the way the rest of us live and make sure we all reside in squalor, huddled by the flickering firelight (organic!) then I believe everyone should have a say-so in the matter. That means when skeptics speak on the topic du jour they are not shouted down or accused of being Lex Luthor. Although if I was ol’ Lex, I wouldn’t dilly-dally around with my evil plans or go into a monologue about them, but that’s a topic for another day.
So in the spirit of discussion, I’ll bring up the topic of recycling. Right now, it’s a non-starter. The only thing that partially makes sense to recycle at the moment is aluminum. Everything else gets collected and dumped into a landfill and they charge you more to do it. There is no market for the trash right now and when there was it took more energy and pollution to recycle the material, except for the aluminum waste. Now if there was a way to recycle all used materials efficiently and break-even on both cost and energy, I’d support it whole-heartedly. As for now, dump it in a landfill and siphon off the gas to power a turbine or two.
I’ll get off my soapbox and get back to work now Maybe Al with have to send his clone Kal-El to another planet due to my evil plans.