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3 rd Test Starts Here. Service Opps: today (April 6) – 12:15; bag lunch discussion on UT recycling in UC 224. Upcoming Clean Air Race April 10: [email protected] Nashville trip cancelled (we lost again) Final Exam – last day of our class (April 27) OR assigned day

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3rd Test Starts Here

  • Service Opps: today (April 6) – 12:15; bag lunch discussion on UT recycling in UC 224.

  • Upcoming Clean Air Race April 10: [email protected]

  • Nashville trip cancelled (we lost again)

  • Final Exam – last day of our class (April 27) OR assigned day

  • Service Opp! Big Dig: Summer Intern with Cumberland trail May 16-June 26. Pays $1000.; learn to build & maintain wilderness trails, supervise volunteer trailworkers

  • Contact: Mark Stanfill at 931-456-6259; www.cumberlandtrail.org


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Water Pollution

  • Water pollution is contamination of water by foreign matter that deteriorates the quality of the water

  • Normally water can cleanse itself via: dilution, settling, aerosols, biodegradation

  • Water pollution occurs when these four are overwhelmed

  • Point vs Non-point sources


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Importance: water pollution

  • Globally, 2.3 billion people suffer from diseases linked to water

  • Water borne diseases, also known as “dirty water” disease, result from using water contaminated by human, animal, or chemical wastes. These diseases cause an estimated 12 million deaths a year, 5 million of them from diarrheal diseases. Most of the victims are children in developing countries. 

  • According to the World Commission on Water for the 21st Century, more than half of the World’s major rivers are so depleted and polluted that they endanger human health and poison surrounding ecosystem.

  • In many large cities in the developing world the drinking water supply is contaminated. Only half of Southeast Asia’s 550 million people have access to safe drinking water



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Eutrophication

  • Eutrophication = literally, too much food

  • Occurs when sewage and/or fertilizer drains into a water body (esp ponds, lakes)

  • Causes rapid growth of algae (“blooms”)

  • Algae die and decay  uses up oxygen

  • Causes fish kill; becomes “scummy”


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Aerial view of Lake 227 in 1994. Note the bright green color caused by algae stimulated by the experimental addition of phosphorus for the 26th consecutive year. Lake 305 in the background is unfertilized


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Mitigating eutrophication

  • What Can I Do?

  • Limit your fertilizer use and apply at appropriate times (UMD's Home and Garden Information Center)

  • "BayScape" your yard (Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay)

  • Control runoff and soil erosion (UMD's Home and Garden Information Center).

  • Start a compost pile and recycle yard waste (UMD's Home and Garden Information Center).

  • Conserve water and energy (Maryland Department of Natural Resources)

  • Plant trees (Maryland Department of Natural Resources).

  • Maintain your septic system (University of Maryland)

  • Drive less

  • Be a responsible boater and pump out wastes


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Fixing (restoring) water bodies

  • 1) Stop point pollution – factories, pipes (pretty easy)

  • 2) Stop non-point pollution-very hard; build artificial wetlands: retention ponds with lots of cat-tails and other vegetation (slow water down, trickle into river or lake)

  • 3) For ponds: drain and dredge; aerate

  • 4) Restock with native fishs and plants

  • Lake Erie is recovering; Lake Apopka Fla

  • Rivers & creeks can recover quickly if pollution stopped and river channel renaturalized


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Water quality testing

  • DO (Dissolved Oxygen)

  • Nitrates, phosphates

  • E. coli (coliform bacteria) – culture kits

  • Sediment (turbidity)

  • IBI – Index Biotic Integrity: is aquatic diversity low? Are a few species superabundant? If yes: unhealthy stream

  • Indicator species: trout, most clams, stream minnows = healthy stream

  • many insect larvae, protozoans, exotic species (carp, zebra mussel)= unhealthy stream.


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EPA primary regs

  • List of Contaminants regulated by EPA: Microorganisms | Disinfectants | Disinfection Byproducts | Inorganic Chemicals | Organic Chemicals | Radionuclides

  • MCL’s for all of these are tested, periodically by law, especially in water systems


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EPA secondary regs

  • National Secondary Drinking Water Regulations (NSDWRs or secondary standards) are non-enforceable guidelines regulating contaminants that may cause cosmetic effects (such as skin or tooth discoloration) or aesthetic effects (such as taste, odor, or color) in drinking water. EPA recommends secondary standards to water systems but does not require systems to comply. However, states may choose to adopt them as enforceable standards.


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Oxidation ditch

Clarifier


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Wastewater treatment

  • The chemicals used in the waste purification process can also be harmful.  Used in large quantities, these chemicals – including chlorine or chlorine dioxide gas -- can produce environmental risks.  Storm water run-off might also pose a problem if contaminated with waste or other pollutants. The often foul smell of sewage treatment plants can generally be attributed to hydrogen sulfide, which is toxic and can cause problems ranging from eye irritation and nausea to toxic explosions.  However, the odor is often diluted in the air and is usually of little or no harm.

  • Treatment plants can cause contaminated water.  Potential contaminators are bacteria, nitrates, oxygen-depleting organics, and metals.  Exposure can occur through drinking such water, direct skin contact, digesting fish from contaminated waters, or even swimming in such waters.  Reactions can range from rashes to hepatitis.

  • Trihalomethanes (THM’s) = carcinogenic byproducts of chlorination. Solution? Ozonation of water.


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Tap water problems

  • Tap Water Is Full Of Disease-Causing Contaminants - Most municipal water flows through lead pipes over 100 years old picking up harmful toxins and pollutants before the water treatment plant (which performs very limited functions) and also afterwards when the water is on its way to your house.

  • Arsenic - Which has been directly linked to cancer and many other diseases, has been found in 85% of our cities' water. Exposure to lead found at "alarmingly high levels" in many cities by Consumer Reports, can cause learning and behavioral problems in children, lower IQ, high blood pressure, and problems to the reproductive and nervous systems.

  • Some other common water contaminants and what they have been linked to are: Asbestos (cancer and other diseases), Aluminum (Alzheimer's), Benzene (cancer, anemia), Mercury (nervous system and kidney damage), Toluene (cancer), herbicides and pesticides such as Endrin (liver, kidney and heart damage, respiratory problems and cancer).

  • 80% of city water systems were not equipped with filters that meet EPA standards. In addition, most cities add the harmful Chlorine and Fluoride to water.


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Tap water problems

  • A recent Water Quality Association poll showed that 74% of Americans consider their tap water contaminated or dangerous. 80% don't like the taste. And the following annual figures from the National Resources Defense Council confirm the shocking problem: Every year in the U.S.:

  • 900,000 Sick and 900 Dead due to water contamination.

  • These figures don't even factor in the thousands of long term illnesses and deaths from cancer, kidney and heart disease linked to contaminated water.

  • If you have your own well water, you're not really better off. In fact, most of those on well water have more contaminants per drop than those in cities.

  • Many are also concerned today by bio-terrorism threat to our water supplies as there are 168,000 different public water supplies in the U.S., many of which are completely unprotected.



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Bottled water

  • Bottled Water May Be Worse - Recognizing the problem with tap water, many Americans have turned to bottled water. Unfortunately, bottled water is not only quite expensive, it is often just as contaminated as your tap water.

  • According to FDA rules, bottled water is subject to less testing and lower standards than our tap water! Even disinfection is not a requirement for bottled water! A 4-year NRDC scientific study on bottled water, based on 1000 bottles of 103 brands of water confirmed that bottled water is not necessarily cleaner or safer than common tap water.

  • University of Iowa tested 39 different brands of bottled water and found that 75% of them contained chemicals, dissolved metals, and traces of arsenic, barium and toluene. Their conclusion was "Bottled water is no better than tap water and, in some cases, even worse".


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Low pressure units typically provide between 24 and 35 gallons per day of water

They typically filter up to 95% of the material in the water.


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Legal Aspects I gallons per day of water

  • Riparian law = landowner water rights

  • Appropriation law = government water rights

  • Both often fail to protect downstream users

  • Example: rule of “prior use” out West: big mess (Colorado River)

  • Example: private law suits to collect damages in your water


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Legal Aspects II gallons per day of water

  • Clean Water Act 1972: point sources largely fixed

  • Safe Drinking Water Act 1974: water supply regulated

  • Unfixed problems: non-point runoff and ground water pollution (mostly state laws; very weak in TN)


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Announcements gallons per day of water

  • Exam April 27 or during finals week

  • Service opps:

  • UT EarthDay April 22: contact Christina at [email protected]

  • April 14 – see Lois Gibbs talk (Love Canal story) 7 pm UC auditorium; also 2-4 pm workshop on activism in Physics 306


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Air Pollution gallons per day of water

  • When air composition is altered to the point that harm occurs (to human health or property)

  • Air composition: 78% N, 21% O = 99%

  • N2 is an inert (nonreactive) gas

  • Remaining 1% includes hundreds of kinds of gases and particles (CO2, CH4, dust, water vapor); usu measured as ppm, ppb

  • All air pollution is in this remaining 1%


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Importance of Air Pollution gallons per day of water

  • Health: bad air costs US over $150 billion per year (medical, lost work days), kills over 10,000 people per year (how?who?)

  • Most dangerous in US: indoor air pollution (stealth problem) is no. 1; also smog is v. imp.

  • Ecological harm: ozone layer loss, global warming, acid rain, smog on plants

  • Property harm: erosion of buildings


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Kinds of air pollution gallons per day of water

  • Lots of human activities increase air pollution (anthropogenic sources) – most come from fossil fuel combustion

  • 1) particulates (unburned ash) – mostly in poor nations – in US 99% filtered out by scrubbers in smokestacks; causes lung damage

  • 2) carbon oxides (CO, CO2) - esp from motor vehicles: CO is odorless, colorless gas. CO2 is main cause of global warming


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Kinds of air pollution (cont.) gallons per day of water

  • 3) Sulfur oxides (SOx) – from coal burning, H2O + SOx = H2SO4 (sulfuric acid).

  • Creates acid rain. pH scale goes from 0-14, > 7 = alkaline; < 7 = acidic. Log scale. Natural rain is mildly acid (around 6). Acid rain < 5.6. Record in Smokies < 1.

  • Result: acid lakes impacts trout, acid soils kills trees.


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Effects of acid rain on statue gallons per day of water

Statue in a makeshift shelterto save it from acid rain in Berlin Germany


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statue in Germany. The photo on the left was taken in 1908 and the one on the right was taken in 1969.


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Kinds of air pollution (cont) and the one on the right was taken in 1969.

  • 4) smog = NOx + VOCs + O3 + light

  • NOxVille, Tennessee

  • This is a photochemical reaction.

  • Most damaging air poll to our health

  • Effect: burns lung tissue, eyes

  • Sources? 140,000 cars/trucks on I-40 daily

  • Time of day smog peaks?


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Bad air rankings and the one on the right was taken in 1969.

Cities and counties with the worst ozone air pollution, based on U.S. Environmental Protection Agency monitoring in 1997-1999, according to "State of the Air 2001" report by the American Lung Association released Tuesday. Previous year rankings are in brackets.

  • Los Angeles, Calif. (1)

  • Bakersfield, Calif. (2)

  • Fresno, Calif. (3)

  • Visalia, Calf. (4)

  • Houston, Texas (5)

  • Atlanta, Ga. (9)

  • Washington, D.C.(7)

  • Charlotte, N.C., Rock Hill, S.C. (8)

  • Knoxville, Tenn. (12)

  • Philadelphia, Pa., Atlantic City, N.J. (13)

  • Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill, N.C. (17)

  • Sacramento, Calif. (10)

  • Merced, Calif. (10)

  • Dallas, Texas (14)

  • New York, N.Y.; (16)

  • Nashville, Tenn. (18)


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Smog in Seoul Korea and the one on the right was taken in 1969.


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The above photo shows a long line of cars lined up to enter Great Smoky National Park. Aside from the smog blown in from distant power plants and urban areas, the exhaust from the cars of an average of 10,000,000 visitors each year doesn't help the severe air pollution problem in Great Smoky National Park, either. On 140 days during the past four years, the National Park Service has had to warn employees and park visitorsthat the air in the park was unhealthy because of high levels of smog


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GSMNP same view, Great Smoky National Park. Aside from the smog blown in from distant power plants and urban areas, the exhaust from the cars of an average of 10,000,000 visitors each year doesn't help the severe air pollution problem in Great Smoky National Park, either. On 140 days during the past four years, the National Park Service has had to warn employees and park visitors

With and w/out smog


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Solutions to air pollution Great Smoky National Park. Aside from the smog blown in from distant power plants and urban areas, the exhaust from the cars of an average of 10,000,000 visitors each year doesn't help the severe air pollution problem in Great Smoky National Park, either. On 140 days during the past four years, the National Park Service has had to warn employees and park visitors

  • Clean Air Act 1970 reduced many sources BUT many loopholes remain:

  • Grandfathered power plants (TVA)

  • Clunker cars (before 1985 esp)

  • Trucks & SUVs, Semi-trucks exempt from much of it

  • Small engines: boats, mowers, leaf blower

  • TN phased out mandatory inspections!


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Indoor air pollution Great Smoky National Park. Aside from the smog blown in from distant power plants and urban areas, the exhaust from the cars of an average of 10,000,000 visitors each year doesn't help the severe air pollution problem in Great Smoky National Park, either. On 140 days during the past four years, the National Park Service has had to warn employees and park visitors

  • Overlooked but most harmful. Why: spend 80% indoors, poll is concentrated

  • Main kinds: cig smoke (incl 2nd hand); radon, toxic chems from carpet, furniture, household chems

  • SBS = sick building syndrome


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Global Air Pollution Great Smoky National Park. Aside from the smog blown in from distant power plants and urban areas, the exhaust from the cars of an average of 10,000,000 visitors each year doesn't help the severe air pollution problem in Great Smoky National Park, either. On 140 days during the past four years, the National Park Service has had to warn employees and park visitors

  • Loss of the ozone layer – 20 miles up protects life from ultra-violet radiation

  • How made? Light + 3O22O3+CFC

CFC is a catalyst that accelerates the return of O3 back to O2


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CFCs Great Smoky National Park. Aside from the smog blown in from distant power plants and urban areas, the exhaust from the cars of an average of 10,000,000 visitors each year doesn't help the severe air pollution problem in Great Smoky National Park, either. On 140 days during the past four years, the National Park Service has had to warn employees and park visitors

  • CFC = chlorofluorocarbons, invented 1931

  • Since then, 36 billion pounds produced in US

  • Very inert; used as refrigerant (freon), cleaning fluid, aerosol propellant (why?)

  • So lasts many decades in air w/out breaking down

  • In 1970’s discovery of “ozone hole” over S. Pole


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Why ozone hole over S. Pole? Great Smoky National Park. Aside from the smog blown in from distant power plants and urban areas, the exhaust from the cars of an average of 10,000,000 visitors each year doesn't help the severe air pollution problem in Great Smoky National Park, either. On 140 days during the past four years, the National Park Service has had to warn employees and park visitors


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If we lose the ozone layer: Great Smoky National Park. Aside from the smog blown in from distant power plants and urban areas, the exhaust from the cars of an average of 10,000,000 visitors each year doesn't help the severe air pollution problem in Great Smoky National Park, either. On 140 days during the past four years, the National Park Service has had to warn employees and park visitors

  • Blindness

  • Skin cancer

  • Fertility loss

  • Plants dies

  • Ocean food chain

  • Eventually cities underground? Matrix movie but probably without Neo


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Solutions? Great Smoky National Park. Aside from the smog blown in from distant power plants and urban areas, the exhaust from the cars of an average of 10,000,000 visitors each year doesn't help the severe air pollution problem in Great Smoky National Park, either. On 140 days during the past four years, the National Park Service has had to warn employees and park visitors

  • Montreal Protocol (Treaty) of 1987 to phase out CFCs

  • Production of alternatives: compressed air, HFC’s, HCFC’s etc.

  • Very successful (why?)

  • Corporate idiocy? DuPont vs Greenpeace

  • Remaining problems: continued illegal production and use of CFCs

  • Takes over 10 yrs to diffuse up to Oz layer


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Global warming Great Smoky National Park. Aside from the smog blown in from distant power plants and urban areas, the exhaust from the cars of an average of 10,000,000 visitors each year doesn't help the severe air pollution problem in Great Smoky National Park, either. On 140 days during the past four years, the National Park Service has had to warn employees and park visitors

  • 4 main anthropogenic greenhouse gases: CO2, methane, NOx, CFCs but many more

  • Sources of these?

  • Normally excess CO2 will go into solution oceans but not if too much; also some goes to plant biomass (CHO = cellulose)



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Is global warming real? time

  • Correlation is not causation – spurious correlation esp in time series

  • Extrapolation over long time scales does not work for complex systems like Earth

  • But: lots of experimental evidence for GH gas effects on global scale

  • Fossil record: GH gases often drive climate change

  • Precautionary principle


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If Global Warming continues: time

  • 1) Rise in sea level – inches/century until 300 foot rise when all ice melts

  • EPA study estimates that a one meter (3 ft) rise inundates 7000 sq mi of dry land, 50-80% of U.S. wetlands, and costs over $100 billion in the United States alone.

  • Oceanic island nations are very worried




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Announcements coastal erosion each year. EPA

- Good news hybrid car purchases up 26% in 03 over 02.

- Exam April 27 in class OR 12:30pm  Tuesday, May 4

  • Earthfest volunteers badly needed for Keep Knox Beautiful; April 24 at Worlds Fair Park; contact Cortney Piper at 521-6957

  • Ijams volunteer naturalists for childhood education: Ijams is looking for volunteers to lead and/or assist with school groups from now through May 21st. If you are interested or would like to learn more about this opportunity, please email Misty Gladdish at [email protected] or call 865-577-4717 ext. 12.

  • Enjoy Earth Day! UC plaza; great lectures at 3 and 7 today.


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Readings for Final Exam coastal erosion each year. EPA

  • www.scorecard.org (Find Your Community on right of screen: our zip 37996 – know factoids for test)

  • McKinney book Chapters 15-20

  • Review for Exam Sunday April 25 7 pm in GEOLOGY room 302


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If Global Warming continues: coastal erosion each year. EPA

  • 2) Migration of crops and ecosystems North

  • 3) Loss of mountain ecosystems (why?)

  • 4) Increasing aridity in much of central US

  • 5) More violent weather

  • 6) ocean current changes (Gulf Stream slowing or stopping?)


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Solutions to Global Warming coastal erosion each year. EPA

  • Technofix: CO2 + CaO CaCO3 (limestone) = sequestration

  • Plant trees

  • Only real solution: reduce fossil fuels=alternative energy (wind, solar etc): gas prices and gas taxes to promote

  • Kyoto Treaty to phase out fossil fuels – derailed by US: Congress and Pres.

  • Reasons given: hurt our economy, other nations won’t enforce, buying credits from poor nations?


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Solid Waste coastal erosion each year. EPA

Waste = anything society does not use

  • US=most wasteful society in world history

  • Since 1945 US used more resources than the entire world before 1945. Why? Rich resources; no ethic or incentive to conserve

  • Concept of Conspicuous Consumption: bar gets raised all the time; no real correlation between wealth and happiness


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US waste factoids coastal erosion each year. EPA

  • 1 ton household waste per person/year (= 5 pounds per day); this is increasing each year (has doubled in last 20 yr)

  • Add industrial & Agric waste=another 10 tons per person per yr

  • Reason: high consumption combined with little recycling


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Household waste coastal erosion each year. EPA

  • Paper = 40%

  • Food/yard = 25%

  • Plastic = 10%

  • Glass = 10%

  • Metals = 10%

  • Rest = 5%

  • SO: 95% could be recycled

  • In actuality only 20% is recycled


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2) Recycle coastal erosion each year. EPA

1) Source reduction

Waste stream

3) Incineration

4) Landfill

4 ways to deal with waste. 1=best; 4=worst based on cost and envir impact


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Landfills coastal erosion each year. EPA

  • Sanitary landfill: liners, garbage is layered

  • Most common method: 60% of US garbage

  • Problems: water pollution (leachate), space usage (some states have no space left; TN has 50 years or so, we import it); fossilize waste (slow decomposition)

  • Knox: Chestnut Ridge gets 10 tons/day

  • Urban ore mining


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Incineration coastal erosion each year. EPA

  • High temp combustion in a kiln

  • Benefits over landfill: reduces waste volume by 90%, detoxifies much waste; cogeneration of heat

  • Problems: some air pollution (small; deps on what is burning); substantial toxic ash residue

  • Most communities vote against them NIMBY


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Recycling coastal erosion each year. EPA

  • US recycles about 20% of waste stream; Europe and Japan over 35%

  • Recycling rates varies drastically among materials

  • Metals v. high: Aluminum 60%

  • Nationwide, the recycling rate for glass containers is 30%.

  • Plastic among least recycled; less than 20%


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Recycling tires coastal erosion each year. EPA

  • Generation: Approximately 3.8 million tons of rubber tires (or 257 million scrap tires- about 1 tire per person in the United States) were generated in 1995. Percent: Tires made up about 1.8 percent of the MSW stream in 1995. Recovery: In 1995, approximately 17.5 percent of scrap tires were recycled, excluding retreads and tires combusted for energy


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Aluminum coastal erosion each year. EPA

  • In America, 1,500 aluminum cans are recycled every second. In 1999, Americans used 120 billion aluminum cans. We recycled 60% of aluminum cans in 1999. Making cans from recycled aluminum cuts related air pollution (for example, sulfur dioxides, which create acid rain) by 95%.

  • Americans throw away enough aluminum every three months to rebuild our entire commercial air fleet. A quarter of all aluminum goes into packaging.

  • About 70% of all metal used just once and is discarded. The remaining 30% is recycled. After 5 cycles, one-fourth of 1% of the metal remains in circulation


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Paper coastal erosion each year. EPA

  • By Recycling 1 ton of paper you save: · 17 trees · 6953 gallons of water · 463 gallons of oil · 587 pounds of air pollution · 3.06 cubic yards of landfill space · 4077 Kilowatt hours of energy


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Glass coastal erosion each year. EPA

  • A ton of glass produced from raw materials created 384 pounds of mining waste. Using 50% recycled glass cuts it by about 75%. · We get 27.8 pounds of air pollution for every ton of new glass produced.· Recycling glass reduces that pollution by 14-20%. · Recycling glass saves 25-32% of the energy used to make glass. About 75% of America's glass is used for packaging. As late as 1947, virtually 100% of all beverage bottles were returnable. Germany recycles almost 40% of its glass vs 8% US.

  • States with bottle deposit laws have 35-40% less litter by volume.


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Recycled paper = $20/ton coastal erosion each year. EPA

Notebook paper manufacturer

Why recycling is not working too well

Paper from trees = $15/ton

Tax subsidies to logging companies


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Source reduction coastal erosion each year. EPA

  • Also called precycling, pollution prevention pays

  • Using resources more efficiently: eliminate bulky packaging, and other “throwaway” items (point of purchase marketing) = 1/3 of all household waste

  • Miniaturizing things – trend has been for opposite: upsizing. Why? Was Freud right?

  • Waste produced at EACH step of manufacturing and retail process: mine, smelt, assembly, transportation; LCA = Life Cycle Analysis


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Encouraging waste reduction coastal erosion each year. EPA

  • Pay as you Throw: used a lot in Oregon, WA, CA – garbage bills are charged by the bag.

  • Bottle bill – cuts litter by 35-40%

  • Packaging laws to reduce the waste


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Environmental Ethics coastal erosion each year. EPA

  • Aldo Leopold: “right” = that which promotes environmental health; “wrong” = that which does not

  • Sustainability = meeting today’s needs w/out harming future generations = “right”

  • Popular culture: “right” that which is best for humans (only)

  • Ignores other species, future generations


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Making Changes coastal erosion each year. EPA

  • Doing vs talking!

  • Direct action: Edward Abbey, The Monkeywrench Gang

  • Personal lifestyle change: Thoreau, Walden

  • Political action: trying to implement policy changes (gas taxes, etc)

  • Difficult: most people hate change; US history of isolationism

  • Changes need to be pushed. Politicians tend to focus on cosmetic changes that require little work: ethanol for Knoxville’s air pollution, lower speed limit instead of real mass transit, sprawl controls, vehicle inspections

  • Political system designed to be slow (checks & balances)


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Economic Incentives to solve environmental problems coastal erosion each year. EPA

  • Legal solutions only work where there are a few envir violators, such as factories

  • Reason: cost of enforcement too high

  • Problem: most current envir problems involve many violators – litter, cars (global warming, smog), overconsumption

  • Also, political systems designed to be slow

  • So: need economic incentives to promote envir sustainable behaviors


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Economic incentives I coastal erosion each year. EPA

  • 1) Stop giving money to encourage envir harmful behaviors (dirty subsidies) – tax dollars to oil companies, logging, mining, urban sprawl (we build roads, schools)

  • Promote altern fuels, recycling, downtown renewal (hybrid cars and wind power would incr even faster)

  • Companies getting these have been VERY successful with public relation campaigns to keep them (ex: coal is good; treehuggers are extremists)

  • Focus on ideology, fringe science


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Economic incentives II coastal erosion each year. EPA

  • 2) Start taxing those behaviors more (green taxes): gas tax, bottle bill, higher fines on polluters

  • People hate taxes but these would reduce other taxes (such as income tax); $$ go toward mass transit, hybrid cars, other sustainable activities (now most gas tax goes…where?)


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Jobs and Sustainability coastal erosion each year. EPA

  • Sustainability = more jobs (CA has biggest economy of any state, and also strictest env laws)

  • Examples: waste disposal for a small town – landfill 50 jobs, incineration 250 jobs, recycling 500 jobs

  • Wind/solar vs oil for energy

  • Logging vs recreation – 2 x more money per acre


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Paying true environmental costs coastal erosion each year. EPA

  • Green taxes make the consumer pay the true cost of the product

  • Free market works ok if consumer pays “true costs”: examples – does cheap gas include global warming? Smog?

  • True env costs are often hidden (can’t see global warming; been to a factory farm?)

  • True env costs WILL be paid by someone: WHO?


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Paying envir costs to poor nations coastal erosion each year. EPA

  • Not foreign aid

  • Gene patents for profit-making species

  • Higher prices for rainforest products, minerals etc

  • Microloans to sustainable businesses

  • Ecotourism, fair trade products, shade grown coffee, sustainable harvesting of rainforest

  • US could play an active role; does it now?


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Environmental Law coastal erosion each year. EPA

  • All major federal and state envir laws were passed in the 1970’s.

  • Since then, US public has generally become less interested in major laws

  • In part: a big backlash by people and companies affected by these laws (developers, road builders, farmers you name it)

  • TVA and the snail darter

  • Decreasing emph on science, facts


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Environmental Law coastal erosion each year. EPA

  • Clean env is NOT a constitutional right (Sierra Club & Supreme Court)

  • Even if laws were strengthened: enforcement problem (Mexico has strict env laws, no real enforcement)

  • 2005 budget – 7% cut for EPA, same for TDEC; since 1995 EPA & TDEC down by 15-20%

  • 99% of envir violators not penalized


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Women 20-35 coastal erosion each year. EPA

Women 35-55

Women over 55

Men 20-35

Men 35-55

Men over 55

Environmental politicsWhich one of these 6 groups is only one where the majority of people votes to weaken environmental regulations?


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Which region of US is the only one to consistently vote against environmental regulations?

  • And has most pollution and sprawl?:

  • Western US

  • Central

  • SW

  • SE

  • NE


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How to NOT solve the environmental crisis against environmental regulations?

  • And guarantee an overpopulated polluted world depleted in resources governed by a few rich people and many poor people:

  • 1) be an ideologue – decide arguments on basis of abstract ideology

  • 2) ignore facts – focus on people’s character or select facts to fit your goals

  • 3) be materialistic – make wealth accumulation the main goal of life

  • 4) be short-sighted – focus only on the here and now; give no thought to the future


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