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This is a reconstruction from notes of a talk delivered at a teach-in on "The Capitalist Crisis and the Environment" organized by the Education and Empowerment Working Group, Occupy Wall Street, Zuccotti Park (Liberty Plaza), New York, October 23, 2011. It was based on a talk delivered the night before at the Brecht Forum. Fred Magdoff also spoke on both occasions.
The turn to those alternative technologies that are already available (for example, solar power) has been hindered by the fact that they are often less profitable or require changes in social organization to be implemented effectively. As a result, greater emphasis is placed on: (1) nuclear energy (a Faustian bargain if there ever was one); and (b) carbon capture and sequestration technology for coal-fired plants, which is neither economically nor ecologically feasible at present, and hence only serves to keep coal, the dirtiest fossil fuel, going. Beyond this the only option that the vested interests (the 1% and their hangers-on) have left is to push for geoengineering technologies. This involves such measures as dumping sulfur dioxide particles in the atmosphere to block the suns rays (with the danger that photosynthesis might be decreased), or fertilizing the ocean with iron to promote algal growth and absorb carbon (with the possibility that dead zones might expand). These geoengineering schemes are extremely dubious in terms of physics, ecology, and economics: all three. They involve playing God with the planet. Remember the Sorcerer's Apprentice!
Nevertheless, such technological fantasies, bordering on madness, continue to gain support at the top. This is because attempts to shift away from our currently wasteful society in the direction of rational conservation, involving changes in our way of life and our form of production, are considered beyond the pale -- even when the very survival of humanity is at stake.
The other approach is to demand changes in society itself; to move away from a system directed at profits, production, and accumulation, i.e., economic growth, and toward a sustainable steady-state economy. This would mean reducing or eliminating unnecessary and wasteful consumption and reordering society -- from commodity production and consumption as its primary goal, to sustainable human development. This could only occur in conjunction with a move towards substantive equality. It would require democratic ecological and social planning. It therefore coincides with the classical objectives of socialism.
Such a shift would make possible the reduction in carbon emissions we need.
Originally posted by MathiasAndrew
reply to post by Uncinus
I can appreciate your comments about the article but not so much the title of your thread. Are you advocating for OR admitting to.. the tests and/or use of SAG/SRM geoengineering? Or is it neither and you are just preaching at your contrail pulpit?
Sounds to me like you might have turned over a new leaf of sorts, yes-no ? Perhaps it's because so many people are becoming aware of this issue now. That you have no choice but to admit to some aspects of it. And that some of these "crazy chemmies" who link the geoenginnering studies with the chemtrail theories might actually have some validity and credibility to their arguments and fears now.