Environmental Solutions Are Economic Solutions

If we blindly accept an ideological line, too often motivated by self-serving political or financial gain, and never look at the total costs, we forfeit our most powerful weapon in solving our environmental challenges – human ingenuity.

ENERGY

Wind turbines

Wind turbines

Thomas L. Freidman’s Hot, Flat and Crowded: Why We need a Green Revolution – And How it Can Renew America provides a comprehensive, factual look at some of the most important environmental challenges and courageously posits solutions. The fact that neither political party, fettered by economic lobbies and agendas, have fully engaged, let alone embraced, his bold calls for action – makes his suggestions even more powerful, serious and worthy of scrutiny and consideration. He looks a short-term, long-term issues and costs. He proposes solutions that would not only revolutionize energy and economies but provides the basis for a new renaissance of American ingenuity and industry. For more information see www.thomaslfriedman.com and Inconvenient Truth.

CARS

Hydrogen Car

Hydrogen Car

We’ve had electric cars for decades. But no one would buy a car that could only reach 60 mph and needed an eight hour charge to travel less than 100 miles. Then Toyota unveiled the Prius Hybrid that could reach 100 mph and travel as far as 500 miles at 50 mpg with a combination of electricity and gasoline.It quickly became the best-selling car in America. The technology exists right now to create a car that can go 0 to 60 in five seconds, that you fill up with your garden hose and its exhaust is steam. Does Exxon or Saudi Arabia want this made?

For more information, see HydrogenCarsnow.com
www.HydrogenCarsnow.com
and Hydrogen Vehicle.

MEDICINE

The National Cancer Institute estimates that 60 to 90% of all botanical cures for disease exist in the rainforests of the world.If we destroy them, we lose these forever. Pharmaceutical companies have formed ventures with rainforest countries whereby large tracts of rainforests are held a nature trusts and preserved in exchange for the right to search these forests for botanical with the knowledge that you can’t find or extract these potential cures if you destroy where they exist. The host country and the pharmaceutical company agree to share in the profits. You save the rainforest while potentially creating cures for disease and economic development. For more information, click here.

FOOD

Food

Since the 1940’s pesticide use has increased tenfold, but crop losses to insects have doubled.” – Natural Resources Defense Council, Intolerable Risk: Pesticides in our Children’s Food. Just a few decades ago the emerging nation of Indonesia did not have the money to buy the “pesticide-fix” offered by chemical industries but they had to feed a growing population. Food and economic necessity had them search for means of increasing food production while reducing crop losses to insects and other predators. They discovered that with a combination of irrigation techniques, crop rotations and the use of “good” bugs to fight off “bad” bugs they could effectively do both. They increased rice production so effectively that it became an export product. And they did this without the cost of wide-spread chemical pesticides. This technique has been shared and published by the United Nations.It is called Integrated Pest Management. We can increase crop yields, reduce losses to insect infiltration, have safer and healthier food for less money. For more information, read this article.

NATIONAL DEBTS

Rainforest

The rainforests of the world are being cut, burned and destroyed at the rate of a football field a second. These forests contain the vast majority of plant and animal species on our planet. What does that have to do with you, me or anyone else? The genetic diversity that these forests contain supports our lives. Without genetic diversity species die off – including us. Botanical cures for disease, the infrastructure to beam and arch construction, a snake’s venom that provided the clue for a high blood pressure medication that saves millions of lives; and the list goes on and on. A brilliant biologist, Thomas Lovejoy, understanding the need to protect this treasure engineered a brilliant solution called, Debt for Nature Swap. Lovejoy looked at the rainforests in many developing countries that were saddled with huge debt to international banks. Debts that the countries and banks knew would most likely never be re-paid in full and whose interest, alone,were sapping these emerging economies. The concept was simple, swap hectares of rainforests protected in trust from destruction in exchange for reduction or forgiveness of debt.Millions of rainforests have been saved while enhancing economic prospects.

TOXINS

Toxins

The US Environmental Protection issued a report about six years ago that stated two-thirds (2/3) of Americans were at increased risk of cancer from their every day toxic exposures. An earlier University of Southern California study reported that in homes that used every-day household pesticides the increase risk of childhood leukemia was over 500 times greater.

Firemen, police officers, first-responders, industrial workers, farm workers, even indoor-office workers are exposed to a myriad of toxins that can affect their health and productivity.

A Science journal study reported that if the Los Angeles Basin simply met air quality standards we would save ten billion dollars a year in lost productivity, medical costs and nearly 1600 premature deaths.

A report I gave on detoxification for industrial workers to the United Nations Man and His Biosphere Conference and the USSR Academy of Sciences in Moscow just before The Wall came down was heralded as an invaluable tool in improving worker productivity – an issue with its emerging competitive economy was suddenly very important and practical in Russia.

A report on 22 Los Angeles Police Officers exposed to multiple toxins in a chemical fire undergoing detoxification showed a potential savings of millions of dollars in disability, Workmen’s Comp claims, lost productivity and medical costs and health problems.

The bottom line: if we reduce every day toxic exposure and utilize detoxification (see Detoxification) when exposures do occur we can save billions of dollars in the US alone in illnesses, deaths, lost productivity and heath care costs.