Wednesday, 14 October 2009

Technological Fixes for the Environment are Evil!

Brian Micklethwait commenting on an article by Dominic Lawson in the Independent newspaper.

About two decades ago, I gave a talk to an audience that included some devout environmentalists. In one of my answers to one of these persons, I said that if a technological fix could be found for, say, the hole in the ozone layer (a big topic in those days), by e.g. sending a rocket up into the hole and shovelling ozone out into the hole, thereby mending it, that would mean that we could be a little more relaxed about causing the hole to get big in the first place. In general, I argued, technologically fixable problems are less of a worry than technologically unfixable ones.

It was if I had said that, on account of a new kind of metal cleaner recently invented, it had become less of a problem if people broke into churches and pissed on crucifixes. It was, I was told in shocked tones, the very idea that problems could be solved with technology that was at the heart of the evil that humanity was facing.

Read the rest here at Samizdata.


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