“False Solutions” Reading Room

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M. Spector M. Spector's picture
“False Solutions” Reading Room


M. Spector M. Spector's picture

An introduction to the many bogus solutions being proposed to address the climate and energy crisis.
[url=http://www.risingtidenorthamerica.org/wordpress/false-solutions/]All in PDF format.[/url]

Topics include:

• “Kyoto, too little too late”
• “Clean Coal” Factsheet
• "The Case against Carbon Trading”
• “The Sky is Not the Limit: The Emerging Market in Greenhouse Gases”
• “Hoodwinked in the Hothouse: The G8, Climate Change and Free-Market Environmentalism”
• “10 things you should know about tree offsets”
• Energy Justice Network’s Ethanol and Biodeseil Factsheets
• "Fueling Disaster: A community food security perspective on agrofuels“


Thanks M. Spector, that's a really interesting site and a fine primer for anyone a bit new to the issue. Also a handy one stop reference source for anyone.

Much too much to read at once, but I'm going to print off those articles as time permits for closer perusal.

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

You're welcome. Here are a couple more "False Solutions" .pdf's:

[url=http://www.carbontradewatch.org/pubs/carbon_neutral_myth.pdf]The Carbon Neutral Myth[/url] from Carbontradewatch.org

[url=http://www.dhf.uu.se/pdffiler/DD2006_48_carbon_trading/carbon_trading_we... Trading: A Critical Conversation on Climate Change, Privatisation, and Power[/url] from the Dag Hammarskjцld Foundation

Anybody got others?

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

[url=http://www.zmag.org/sustainers/content/2007-12/13shiva.cfm]Food, Forests and Fuel : From False to Real Solutions for the Climate Change[/url], by Vandana Shiva.


Great site Spector... Atleast from what I've read so far. In the too little too late PDF:


Rising Tide believes a decade of pressuring politicians (many of
whom are deeply invested in the fossil fuel economy) over Kyoto has
achieved little impact on the biased and undemocratic institutions
they run, where wealth and profit are the dominant policy makers.
With time running out, it’s time to focus on eliminating of the
power of corporations promoting fossil fuels and their consumption.
A sustainable society demands the radical restructuring (or even
dismantling) of corporate, industrial, and government institutions.
Direct action and grassroots community organizing against
climate change is in line with the transformations we seek -
through both we intend to remind people of the enormous power we
have to create a holistic cultural change toward sustainability
and empowerment.
Join Us: [url=http://www.risingtide-na.org]www.risingtide-na.org[/url]
[email protected]

Time to go read the risingtide website me thinks.


Thanks especially for those articles on carbon neutrality and carbon offsets. I find those schemes particularly abhorrent.


Speaking of carbon credits, [url=http://www.cheatneutral.com/]this spoof is hilarious.[/url]


What is Cheat Offsetting?

When you cheat on your partner you add to the heartbreak, pain and jealousy in the atmosphere.

Cheatneutral offsets your cheating by funding someone else to be faithful and NOT cheat. This neutralises the pain and unhappy emotion and leaves you with a clear conscience.

Can I offset all my cheating?

First you should look at ways of reducing your cheating. Once you've done this you can use Cheatneutral to offset the remaining, unavoidable cheating.



Originally posted by Michelle:
[b]Speaking of carbon credits, [url=http://www.cheatneutral.com/]this spoof is hilarious.[/url]


[img]biggrin.gif" border="0[/img] That is funny!

What bugs me is that David Suzuki, Al Gore and a whole host of environmental activists spout the carbon neutral dogma. (Probably to convince themselves that jetting off to Bali for a week actually helps the environment)

Frustrated Mess Frustrated Mess's picture


What bugs me is that David Suzuki, Al Gore and a whole host of environmental activists spout the carbon neutral dogma.

Yes, because it is all about the personalities. Tell me, what is your solution?

[ 07 January 2008: Message edited by: Frustrated Mess ]

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

From [url=http://www.carbontradewatch.org/pubs/carbon_neutral_myth.pdf]The Carbon Neutral Myth[/url] from Carbontradewatch.org, referenced above:


To ask what is the alternative to offsets is to give them a sort of legitimacy that they do not deserve. Genuine climate change action has been going on for a long time before offsets ever appeared on the scene, and will go on for a long time after they have eventually been dismissed as exploitative free-market gimmickry. To pose ‘doing nothing about climate change’ against offsetting is a false opposition. It is more a question of choosing from the rich array of effective and empowering opportunities that there are to take action while ignoring bogus ‘solutions’ like offsets from the very outset….

Effective climate action starts with addressing the fact that big cuts need to be made in the disproportionate share of emissions that the North is responsible for, and recognising that it also controls a disproportionate share of global wealth and technological resources. These should be shared if the North is to support the development of the low-carbon economy in the South in a noncolonialist fashion….

The single most effective - and incontrovertible - way of dealing with climate change is drastically to limit the quantity of fossil fuels being extracted. Providing support for communities who are resisting the efforts of the industries to extract and burn ever-increasing quantities, therefore, is one of the important strategies in dealing with climate change. Yet it is the least encouraged because, unlike carbon offsets, it involves posing a critical challenge the established systems of corporate power and societal organisation.

Frustrated Mess Frustrated Mess's picture

I don't disagree that carbon offsets are bullshit.

But what is the purpose of attacking personalities? If we are going to attack personalities, why not any one of us here? What are any of us doing about climate change and the greater issue of environmental degradation? Besides attacking Gore and Suzuki, I mean?

Because like it or not, Gore and Suzuki are working with the fucked up system we gave them. Look at the report released today. Look at the debate that takes place on this site and everywhere else. It is carbon offsetting writ large.

Everyone wants to continue with the destruction of the planet unabated while sweeping the mess under the carpet. The debate is not about how do we organize our societies to ensure sustainability and a future for the next generation, but how do we keep living exactly as we are for as long as possible while shifting the cost to the poor and that very same next generation.

This whole debate about carbon offsetting and carbon taxes is exactly that. It is all about maintaining our destructive way of life for a little while longer.

And I'm sorry for the hostility. But, really, it has piss all to do with Gore and Suzuki. It has everything to do with our own personal convenience and sense of entitlement.

ETA: And I do appreciate the links, M. Spector. You are a wonderful resource.

[ 07 January 2008: Message edited by: Frustrated Mess ]


Emma, think of what you are saying here:


(Probably to convince themselves that jetting off to Bali for a week actually helps the environment)

Because staying here and letting the oil executives who are allowed to freely waste oil since they're supposed to waste oil be the only ones at a climate change conference would be much better.

You should be mocking the system that they are forced to use instead of mocking them for using the system they are forced to use. Can you not see that you're holding these names accountable yet letting all the rest that are using the same system off the hook? Feel a bit hypocritical yet?

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

[url=http://www.thecornerhouse.org.uk/resources/results/taxonomy:14]Good collection of links to online articles about climate change.[/url]

Titles include:

Carbon Trading, Climate Justice and the Production of Ignorance: Ten Examples

Carbon Trading 101 Are Climate Markets a Solution or an Obstacle?

The Carbon Neutral Myth: Offset Indulgences for your Climate Sins

The Limits of Free Market Logic

'Made in the USA': A short history of carbon trading

The Kyoto Protocol: Neocolonialism and Fraud

The Dyson Effect: Carbon ‘Offset’ Forestry and The Privatization of the Atmosphere

[edited November 19, 2011 to update hyperlink]