The world may be burning, but more and more companies are giving us green alternatives to our favorite products so we can continue to shop and consume the same way we always have, but without hurting the Earth - or so they would like us to believe. Greenwashing, the practice of making bad things seem environmentally friendly, has run rampant across the shelves of our favorite stores and even carried over to the actions of companies, NGOs, and nations themselves. Is there any hope to the allure of shopping in an environmentally friendly way? What are the greatest greenwashing sins occurring right now? Is there any hope outside of radical change if we want to save the Earth? We think you probably know the answers to these questions, but join us this week as we explore all this and much more in our dive into the mean, green, corporate machines of the world.
Special thanks to fans of the show, The Matching Shoe, for the outro track "Pickin' Up Speed." Be sure to check out their new album!
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[0:22] I'm David Torcivia.
[0:24] Daniel Forkner.
[0:26] And this is Ashes Ashes, a show about systemic issues, cracks and civilization, collapse the environment, and if we're unlucky the end of the world.
[0:36] But if we learn from all of this maybe we can stop that the world might be broken but it doesn't have to be.
[0:50] David we've talked a lot on this show about. Climate change environmental destruction unthinking episode 70 thinner ice episode 50 Apocalypse Now where we talked about the latest ipcc report.
[1:06] And the lies that it contain.
[1:09] The lies of the contain and what it means for the future of humanity. Going way back Episode 34 Irreplaceable on the way that climate change is destroying habitats and and diversity of species all over the world. And as you would expect many people want to do something about that right we want to hold our politicians accountable we want to hold our companies accountable. Right that makes sense these are the people and the organizations that have the most power in our world and therefore have the greatest potential to change.
[1:42] Understand I don't want to just hold them accountable I want them to actually stop doing what they're doing and fix these problems but I guess we have to start somewhere.
[1:51] Lucky for you David some companies are doing something as you as you may know it was Earth Day a couple days ago ye Earth and the CEO of Apple Tim Cook Twitter.
[2:06] I think his name is Tim Apple actually.
[2:08] Tim Apple in support of Earth day he tweeted out pictures of nature. And he made sure everyone knew that they were shot with an iPhone the company also celebrated Earth Day by making the leaf on the Apple logo green for the day, and also in celebration of Earth Day they challenged all the owners of an iWatch to complete a 30 minute workout challenge.
[2:35] They weren't the only people I saw celebrating Earth Day on a Twitter. The Democratic party were trying to let everybody know that they were the party of environmentalism by changing their little blue D to a green tea as a really beautiful tweet made me tear up. I think what the trees bloomed when it saw Yaya Instagram ashes ashes cast you can actually see this but I think we should also note at the same time that while the Democrats are in favor of. You know publishing this green Diaz their support of the earth when it comes to actual green policy like the green New Deal well that just isn't realistic or possible sorry. Which I think is kind of the theme of the show today isn't it Daniel.
[3:19] That's right and we're talkin all things green today and on ashes ashes. And specifically the way companies acknowledge the need that we have to preserve the environment while doing absolutely nothing about it.
[3:35] At least nothing substantial.
[3:37] Or more specifically what they claim to do about it which is maybe on the face of it sounds good but in reality is not doing anything or even making it worse.
[3:47] I think this episode in particular such a good topic for the show cuz it really brings together so many things that we talked about like you mention all these climate change episodes where we see just how dramatic the future that is in store for us is. It could be if we don't do something about it and at the same time all this manipulative advertising and behavior changing that we see as part of our creator culture that is because of the way that we interact with business because of way and what you did as consumers.
[4:13] Always things have come together and form this beautiful synthesis. Green products this thing that didn't exist until a few years ago maybe a couple decades back where you as a consumer can continue to act the same way that you already have. Consuming things buying stuff growing economy but doing so in a responsible and Greenway or lease at the pitch. So Daniel do you mean you want to take us back a little bit maybe the beginning of Earth Day history of this environmental movement and show us how we got I guess to this point right now, where we consider for whatever reason making substantial green change nothing more than tweeting out these nature photos.
[4:55] Great idea David I want to take everyone on a short trip down history Lane to really flush out the premise of the show which is that. Climate change and in this environmental destruction that we wants us off doing something about.
[5:11] The real solution to that are in complete opposition. To the current dominant economic ideologies that all of our companies and our politicians are oriented around, like we saw the moment the world scientists, started ringing the alarm bells in the late 80s about climate change in the seriousness of it was the same moment this new world order of globalized free market capitalism. Where we saw the formation of the World Trade Organization. Of international free trade deals all aimed at maximizing the freedom for corporations to. Beloit labor as cheaply as possible sell product for the highest profit possible that are free of regulations and avoid paying taxes. Which were made off board by public-sector spending cuts all this allowed corporations to freely pollute emit emit greenhouse gases with no consequences. Insult racing this history alongside the development of the green movement is really Illuminating to the place that we are in today. And I want to start out with an example from Texas there's a bird species there known as the attwater prairie chicken it's native to the great state of Texas it's actually quite beautiful if you Google this bird they have this.
[6:31] Bright yellow air socks on their face it's quite adorable but they're one of the most endangered birds of North America, and during the 20th century rapid development in Texas fragmented the habitat of this attwater prairie chicken which reduce their population from the millions to the hundreds by just the late 60s, one of the few remaining breeding grounds for these chickens happened to be located on a property owned by Exxon Mobil in Galveston Texas. Fortunately in 1995 ExxonMobil donated the property to The Nature Conservancy, a deal that both organizations made for the stated purpose of saving this chicken from going extinct. And if you know anything about the nature conservancy it is a large international organization that dedicates its mission to preserving land and wildlife habitat and above all combating climate change and environmental destruction. But David a curious thing happened just a few years after this partnership between the nature conservancy and ExxonMobil.
[7:38] I knew this was coming it's never in just a nice story about a q chicken is always something else.
[7:44] We can never just let the chickens be right so it in 1999 this great international organization dedicated to Land Conservancy. Started quietly drilling for oil. On this attwater prairie chicken Reserve preserve and they started Drilling in the exact spot where these prairie chickens nested and made it. At one point, they were constructing a pipeline and there was a delay in the construction so we can serve as he decided that they would delay the introduction of some new at Water chicks by 3 months, so they could get this pipeline done and so by the time they released them it was kind of out of season they all died unsurprisingly.
[8:27] Oh my God.
[8:27] All this was exposed around 2003 when just 50 prairie chickens were thought to still exist anywhere in. As a result a lot of media attention was directed at The Nature Conservancy they stopped this oil drilling of the president, of the organization actually made a public apology and said quote we won't initiate any new oil gas drilling or mining. On preserves that we own we thought we should for appearance's sake not do that again. But then five years later they picked it back up again. And Naomi Klein writes about this in her book this changes everything I want to just read a excerpt from this book on this topic.
[9:11] Quote in November 2012 and with little Fanfare the last of the attwater's prairie chicken disappeared from The Preserve. The Preserve manager set of the birds that there are none that we know about it is worth underlying this detail, under the stewardship of what media described as the biggest environmental non-governmental organization in the world boasting over 1 million members and assets of roughly 6 billion dollars and operating in 35 countries, an endangered species has been completely wiped out from one of its last remaining breeding grounds on which the organization earned Millions drilling for and pumping oil and gas. Amazingly the website for the Texas City Prairie Preserve continues to boast that the quote Land Management techniques the Conservancy utilizes at The Preserve. Best practices that we export to other preserves David I actually checked the website for this preserve and I didn't see that specific quote. But it does now say that quote over the years Texas City Prairie Preserve has become a region-wide model for Native Prairie restoration native seed growing and the benefits of natural infrastructure. And I would just like to point out that in 2018 the wild population of this bird that down to just 12 individuals worldwide and today there are maybe a couple hundred of them after a recent release by the Houston Zoo.
[10:40] I mean that that is a hell of a story right there I got all these greenwashing examples but they're from you know the typical companies you would expect. To do this would have evil stop but like nothing that I have is kind of. This is ridiculous greenwashing from The Nature Conservancy like the people who are supposed to be the good guys and we can't even trust a an organization that literally exist to protect nature. Did you just that when they see the chance of his profit in front of them. Then what hope do we have with the rest of the stuff I know it's only for like 5 minutes into the show and I'm already ready to jump off the cliff here but damn.
[11:21] It will get to maybe why this is but Naomi Klein goes on to write in her book about how these groups are often receiving large donations from energy companies, they had Executives from energy companies that sit on their board excetera conservation International for instance has partnered with Walmart mining companies multiple oil and gas companies in the past, these things I already knew and expected it you know it's pretty common to see nonprofit boards stack with Executives from the same type of Corporations you'd expect them to be adversaries off but what was surprising to me is that many conservation organizations, use part of the endowment money they have right the money that they raise to invest in the stocks of energy corporation. In 2013 The Nature Conservancy had 22.8 million dollars invested with oil and gas companies. The wildlife conservation Society, at a 377 million dollar Endowment in 2012 of which and unspecified portion was invested in energy mining oil drilling and agricultural businesses, the ocean Conservancy had 14 million dollars invested in public stocks in 2012 which over 500 million was an energy, 150 million dollars was in utilities and 130 million dollars was in materials.
[12:41] I'm so tired Daniel everything is so exhausted b b stats.
[12:46] I'm sorry David.
[12:48] What up what do I keep calm and keep calm.
[12:50] Well I know this is kind of painting a bleak picture of these massive Conservancy groups in this is not to say that they don't do a lot of good. I mean that Prairie Preserve in Galveston is is like 2,200 Acres Shore maybe they shouldn't have been drilling on it but, I suppose preserving that land in the way that they did is at least better than just allowing ExxonMobil to completely drill it.
[13:15] I guess I guess I can hand them that it has a lot of this conversation he reminds me of the things that we talked about the episode on philanthropy and specifically full anthro capitalism, where these organizations because of the ways that we decided to shift funding around or, that we feel like Conservancy or philanthropy or or charity shouldn't be something that can exist solely through donations they have to be self-sustainable I guess it's some point which is why they have all these giant endowments. And if you're trying to maximize your endowment I guess they are trying to balance these lesser of two evils like is it better to profit off all the stuff and invested in something. A clinical good or is it better to try and be ethically pure and just move along on the good graces of the people who support your cause. And the obviously the overwhelming Market ideology that we have right now has really pushed is capitalism side of philanthrocapitalism. Which is why we see these, enormous amounts of hypocritical Investments and actions are going on right now but it's sort of bums me out you know.
[14:24] You know I think you're get it you're hitting on an important Point David because. Again it sounds like I'm making these groups out to be evil or something but they're not you know a lot of people that would work for something like The Nature Conservancy want to do good want to preserve things and I volunteered with nonprofits down here in Atlanta where, the people that work there they acknowledge the contradiction of trying to do some specific work that's you know. Supposed to strengthen communities and then look at who sits on their board right they understand that but the whole point is that no going back to the premise of the show as long as the dominant ideologies. A world power is free market Global capitalistic accumulation, that's the structure that these organizations find themselves stuck in and yes they could be better but at the same time they're faced with a difficult choice of being more responsible and losing their revenue from corporate donors or you know fall in line. Paid and do the best you can and the history of environmentalism in the West, is something that Naima Klein goes a little bit into in her book and it's one in which we had Rachel Carson's Silent Spring which many of you are aware of about the dangers of DDT and pesticide use, and the alarm surrounding that as well as the depleting ozone layer really radicalized and mobilized a huge group of the western population who demanded action. You know for us to do something about all this environmental destruction.
[15:52] Yeah it it it turns out people really don't like having acid rain or polluted rivers or are that they can't breathe.
[16:00] Who would have thought and so the people demanded, direct action to challenge all this wild west of pollution and it resulted in, what could be considered the Golden Age of environmentalism here in the West End in the United States there were twenty-three Federal Environmental acts passed into law in the 1970s alone, and from this era came so many of the regulations that were familiar with today including the air quality act the water quality Act the occupational safety and health act the Clean Water Act the Safe Drinking Water Act The Endangered Species Act the Superfund act which requires companies to clean up the toxic waste that they've dumped on land, so many of these acts came within just a couple years of this public outcry. But then David this is where the story changes this is where the tables turned because.
[16:54] Always happens.
[16:56] This prompted the full force of reactionary Capital which. Rushed back against this new environmental movement and a new free market Global Order was ushered in during which environmental regulation was attacked. In part as you know being a trojan horse for evil communism or for Nazism in disguise, and we saw the establishment of a new economic framework. Becoming fully entrenched at the highest levels of power in which freedom for corporations to act unhindered in the pursuit of profit became the only sensible goal yet people like Milton Friedman coming out with, persuasive ideological arguments about how if you want what's best for society, let corporations be greedy and in their pursuit of profit they will satisfy the needs of society right. Another way to put it as Richard Smith writes from The Institute for policy research and development in London, the 70s environmental movement represented ideals of anti-growth where is this reactionary response. By Advocates of so-called green capitalism was that profit growth could be aligned with environmental goals through such things as technology, green labeling and eco-friendly shopping by consumer such that in the words of business leader Paul Hawken quote restoring the environment, and making money can become one in the same process.
[18:25] I want to interrupt you just for staying here damn cuz again I'm seeing Echoes and other things that we talked about, in the show a particularly this denial that we have to change anything in our Behavior because if we just alter size portions of what we consume or the technology that that is powering all of this, then we can continue living this unsustainable life and we see that especially playing out in the conversations that are happening now as we talk. In episode 21 cream ex machina about the geoengineering that is being talked about right now to dramatically alter the earth and its atmosphere in the environment in order to allow us to continue business as usual. And suck some of the carbon out of the air without disrupting ecosystems or the overall environment too much most of which we find out in that episode are nothing more than pipe dreams or so ridiculous that they're not possible or have such incredible side effects that it could often times make the problem worse than it was before put that mindset, that if we just do this magic technology thing if we make these products in a different way if we use this technology to suck carbon out of the air will then we don't have to change our Behavior we can continue to consume and grow indefinitely and that is good for business.
[19:37] Write and in what all this new thinking meant for the green movement was, that funding for those old-school radical groups who wanted to do something about climate change and destruction by taking corporations head-on will that funding dried up, while green groups who are willing to adopt the new market-friendly language they got all the money and their message became one of collaboration and partnership with corporations to find market-based solutions to environmental destruction. The oil drilling done by The Nature Conservancy in that thing that we talked about earlier as a prime example of this. And a few days ago the same time that Tim Cook sent that tweet out that we mentioned in the beginning of the show Apple reminded us of their partnership with conservation International, that they have on a mangrove tree preservation in Columbia this is all problematic because the existence of these big green groups. Reportedly dedicated to protecting the environment and fighting climate change who we've all been sending money to and placing our faith in, they've undermined the ability for large social movements to form because many people simply assume these groups are taken care of it, most of the conversations around climate change since the eighties in fact I've been largely steered by people from the upper classes of elite Society. We're talking about corporate CEOs presidents of corporate aligned Conservancy groups.
[21:05] US vice president these are the people who have been leading the discussion on solutions to these problems.
[21:12] And as Klein points out in her book much of this discussion has in fact, Ben employee to direct Americans to Simply consume more which is really the heart of the problem is we've talked about just consumed more in a different direction here's one more excerpt. From her quote these various approaches also served to reinforce the very extrinsic values that we now know are the greatest psychological barriers to climate action, from worship of wealth and fame for their own sake to the idea that change is something that is handed down from above by arbetter's rather than something we demand for ourselves. They may even have played a role in weakening public believe in the reality of human-caused climate change indeed because the solutions to climate change proposed by mini green groups in this. We're so borderline frivolous, many people concluded that the groups must have been exaggerating the scale of the problem, after all if climate change really was as dire as Al Gore argued wouldn't the environmental movement be asking the public to do more than switch brands of cleaning liquid occasionally walk to work and send more money, wouldn't they be trying to shut down the fossil fuel companies.
[22:31] Daniel all our problems can absolutely be solved by switching our brands of deodorant and that anybody who tells you otherwise he's a liar being paid off by big green energy.
[22:42] Big green energy.
[22:45] Once again Daniel we have gotten pretty deep down this Rabbit Hole even as a little bit of History background but we most of us, that is an asked a lot of our listeners we weren't even alive during this process, at 7 T seem so long ago they figured out the chlorofluorocarbon problem so probably saw a bright but we do encounter this greenwashing today absolutely every time you walk to the store Target Yulee Walmart you go to hear what you see all of this product that's marketed as green and this is our personal experience with what we're talking about today this greenwashing campaign, you watch, and it's it's so completely infiltrated every aspect of her life from her commercials from the vehicles that we travel around in the way the people talk the candidates that are talking about things right now in the run-up to these primaries. A year from now and I still can't believe we're having to talk about this yet all that aside I mean greenwashing is a huge part of our life green products are everywhere. Unfortunately as we continue to find out what's the time the Green in these green products isn't actually environmentally green. Just more money and they're taking advantage of the fact that we do care you know we do care about the environment and that is something that can be twisted very profitable so let's look at some examples of companies committing greenwashing sins.
[24:06] Taking advantage of the consumer want to do good and how the fact that you know.
[24:20] Sins of greenwashing so that we can establish this Baseline, 7.0 mation of like these are the problems that we encounter win products either lie or are misleading or whatever and I make them not actually green. So there's actually an organization they call themselves The Sins of greenwashing that wrote this but other journalists and academics have taken these Concepts to bring work since it will be all that you can buy some of those Journal papers on our website ashes ashes. Orgy but I just wanted some rest from this website and read some of these sincere because once you start thinking about the stuff in terms of these basic guidelines you can see very quickly how little stuff actually is. Are you ready.
[25:03] I'm ready by did Google I had to Google Bodega.
[25:07] Bodega that's what we called like delis are corner stores.
[25:10] Yeah I had no idea I was thinking that it would be something completely different.
[25:14] And I guess the bodega term is relatively recent is only like a small part of New York and then I guess a decade ago it started shifting and now everybody cuz there's so many of us transplants here we all just refer to it as Bodega so that we can feel cool.
[25:29] Yeah David I'm ready for hit me with some examples name and shame as we like to say.
[25:36] Name a name a shame we'll just figure out what we're shaming people for before we start naming them the first sin is the sin of the Hidden it trade off. So what this is doing is is basically claiming that an item is green. By paying attention to a very narrow portion of what the product is so I can imagine you have green paper paper in general is absolutely not environmentally friendly, you have to multiply two trees it's an energy-intensive it's a process there's lots of chemicals involved it's not a green thing, but by saying oh you know this is from a sustainably harvested Forest then we can claim our product is green even though. You know the products and it will never be green it's just less that so that's the scent of the Hidden traitor.
[26:17] Another example might be the electric vehicle right we hear a lot about that.
[26:22] We'll get to that don't worry.
[26:24] Yeah but something like 50 over 50% of all the emissions that is emitted by a vehicle is actually done in the manufacturing and producing process.
[26:33] Of any vehicle and it's even more for Evie's bee yeah.
[26:37] So there you go so in that case it might actually be more environmentally friendly to drive that used car that you have that's an old clunker then it would be to trash that in purchase a brand new electric vehicle.
[26:50] Don't worry we'll get to them this example in-depth very shortly sorry unless we're coming for you but the continue with these sins, the second thing is the sin of no proof and this is basically where they'll post something on the product or talk about their website that makes some sort of claim like it has a certain percentage of recycled content but then there's no actual proof of this is the case and oftentimes these companies do just flat out lie because there are in many cases no consequences for doing that and it's a very simple way to make something with green or to phrase things in misleading ways to people assume something but really the opposite is the case that's soon. There's some of that is the saint of vagueness which is wind that you make a claim that you so poorly word or Define that it could mean absolutely anything and often times when products are marketed as all natural, this is exactly that because they're putting things that are natural but are terrible for you. Uranium parsonage Mercury these are all naturally occurring natural products they could be in the products that you are consuming killing you. It's still all natural.
[28:05] A case is it just a lazy way to do that and we talked a little bit about this how organic you know we have this idea that something is organic it's good, innately it doesn't use pesticides or whatever but often times use these natural pesticides that are way more toxic for you and for the environment that is in the staff feeding the purpose of this process, same type of thing. Again related to this is the sin of worshipping false labels and often times you see this especially with bottled water or like fabric softeners or stuff, where there's this implication is that this is from like a sustainable place, open x OC like designs a beautiful nature and pristine lakes and rivers and and maybe an allusion to some sort of body that guarantees all the stuff is natural fresh but generally there's nothing hard or concrete in that language lawyers have carefully poured over this make sure nothing is actually, guaranteed in this.
[28:57] Does a green leaf on the Apple logo count is green labeling.
[29:02] Exactly so this would be a sin of worshipping false labels. It's a green leaf suggested or something or you might see a bad just says like certified and it doesn't say who it's certified by or what that means, or often times like like maybe a couple leaves with me in a corner and it and it'll just have a green leaves and like a badge and a star on it and you just supposed to assume that oh yeah this is been certified by some organization of this is a green product. That organization doesn't exist we're just supposed to lean on this packaging designed to make you think that it does it make you that much more likely to select it in the store when you're purchasing something whatever it is. The scent of irrelevance is when there's a claim made that is often times true but doesn't actually matter. There's a motorcycle idling outside my door.
[29:50] Did you see that movie with Will Smith where he has superpowers. And he's like a like a like a regular Joe homeless person but he also has super powers.
[30:01] That might have been.
[30:02] All I remember vaguely the superhero movie that with Will Smith and son.
[30:07] No it was absolutely terrible but, one of the main characters was this guy who like he work for a PR Company that was trying to convince companies to use their they're like healthy label or something like, you know they had a little label that if they could convince companies to use it would show that their companies are green or something like that, anyway you were supposed to feel bad for him cuz he was like trying to do the right thing by.
[30:37] And Will Smith a super grateful so he flew to the moon and painted this PR logo on the bright side of the moon so that the whole world could see it in his like supposed to be like heartwarming or so.
[30:50] Subdural yeah I guess that would be a false label but like a really evil what relevance, this is when you put something on a label that sounds good but is often times required to be there by law so like if you put on a product claiming that there are no CFCs no chlorofluorocarbons or towards mercury-free or whatever. That's awesome but also it has to be free of CFCs by law you're just putting this out there to sound like you're being good wouldn't like everything is CFC free. So it's a way to distract people on the sale of this product has no CFCs that's great I don't really know what those are but I know they're bad for me cuz they're not all natural, so that means it's the last Descent of lesser of two evils, you see this a lot in products that are really bad so like say I want to buy a new car and I want to buy a crossover or sport utility vehicle obviously those aren't great vehicles for the environment they pollute a lot more than fuel efficient. There's a new one that is environmentally marketed, Ali will plant trees for me if I purchase this at a slightly higher fuel efficiency I'm going to buy this product instead of a more polluting one, well great congratulations you bought something that is still bad but it's less bad so that's the sin of lesser of two evils.
[32:09] What's the sky like the shell company they have an advertisement on YouTube where they show the psych young couple I think they're lesbians so you know it's also like promoting a we we accept all people and the couple is like converting their home to like solar energy and they're doing all these things and they're talking about how they want to convert to simple living to protect the Earth and then the shell company Zooms in on their oven when they cook something is like in to do that we're helping them with natural gas.
[32:37] Yeah I mean I guess natural gas is better than like burning diesel in the middle of your house but it's still not ideal on the your your Apple still polluting akshat probably combines a couple of these sins in Weston glad and often times that the case is not just one of these usually it's several of the last scene in the greatest sin and the one that we actually see often times is the sin of fibbing, and this is when you just straight up lie this we see a lot of special in electronic products if you've ever purchased a new refrigerator or air conditioner something and you see that energy star I'll reading on it that says this product is more efficient or less efficient than others often times these companies just straight up lie on this and those tests the energy star ratings are self-administered, there is very little consequences if you take that.
[33:25] LG actually just they recently had a bunch of there fridges that they lied about their efficiency many times they would use it as much as twice the electricity that they claimed it would and the consequence for that well they had to send a letter to the consumers letting them know that they lied but they didn't say lie they said we performed things with slightly different specifications in AR test and we were supposed to so that your energy rating is actually higher in real world use than we thought initially sorry it's not actually energy STAR certified and that is this enough, and that brings me to one of my favorite recent greenwashing the controversies which is Volkswagen maybe you heard about this in the news Daniel with their diesel cars, but in Europe especially where diesel is much more popular than in the United States Volkswagen was marketing their products there is there diesel vehicles at clean diesel because. As clean diesel and under someone honking every time I say clean diesel Volkswagen outside as clean diesel.
[34:24] Volkswagen trying to silence me as clean diesel and Diesel is more fuel efficient than regular gasoline I'm a big problem with it overtime with that diesel was putting more in this process it really smoke particulate matter some of the nitrous oxide these other films are coming off of it one more problematic to the local air pollution so I was discouraged but Modern Diesel engines are much more efficient and eliminating all this extra stuff so it's gotten cleaner and you're made a big push to try and adopt diesel as the primary fuel of choice because these fees mileage, requirements for The Fleets were so stringent that is a great way for them to meet that while waiting for electric vehicle technology to mature a little bit more because, honestly it's still quite not ready for Primetime but, Volkswagen was having trouble getting their diesel engines to perform correctly in terms of both mileage as well as these blucian standards. And so they came up with a strategy a very small group of people within the company decided that the way to get around this was they were going to sell a little chip. On their overall computer control for each of these engines that would detect when these engines and these vehicles for being tested for fuel efficiency and for emissions.
[35:43] Answer but do you think they installed a chip that would know when a person was about to test for the emission so that it could like maybe I just the way the engine output to trick the emission computer.
[35:57] That is exactly what happened so are we all.
[36:00] That that's so that's so like a genuinely like brilliant evil thinking right there.
[36:06] I know right it would it's a move fast and break regulations sort of mine said I think it's slipped over from Silicon Valley.
[36:12] Innovation at its finest.
[36:14] It's disruption Daniel and familiar with emissions test your vehicle yet to get test every few years to make sure it's not polluting and so these cars.
[36:24] Or at least not polluting over a certain threshold.
[36:27] Exactly thank you that's the important distinction these cars would detect when they were being tested for emissions. Alter the way the engine would run a in a way that is not great for driving but it is great for these tests, so they would pass their emission test and then as soon as they were disconnected from the computer that would go back to that more polluting more fuel intensive program for the engine. Well eventually they were busted for this people figured it out, some people went to jail they were huge fines posted Volkswagen is now installing enormous electric charging networks as part of their Penance for this this process spending billions of dollars to do that but this whole time remember they were marking this as a cleaner product is clean diesel greener than the Alternatives and this is such a great example of some of the greenwashing that we see today where a company is saying one thing, and really doing another.
[37:23] I guess it from your seven sins or however many since it was of greenwashing David that would be the sin of fibbing the sin of Miss labeling, and you know probably probably another sin to just throw another sin in there too.
[37:38] You probably link all those sins in there at some point. Daniel doesn't just end with these fossil fuel burning cars either of these problems greenwashing also extend into electric cars which I think we all like to look at as these bastions of what is green and good and environmentally friendly but a paradoxical e that's often times not the case, like you mentioned earlier in this episode, building a car is very energy-intensive uses a lot of energy it takes a lot of Transportation there's a lot of mining that goes into it It's Complicated by the fact that we can build in these cars and then buy them as affordable as they are, is nothing short of a miracle modern car companies are really just masters of Supply chains and assembly that happened to also make cars.
[38:25] But that aside electric vehicles are more complex in this process than traditional Vehicles because the construction the battery pack requires a lot of energy and a lot of rare Earth elements that are hard to get out that require extra shipping from all places around the world often times in controversial places like in the Democratic Republic of Congo or we turn to for a lot of the Cobalt muscle twitches Mind by children child slaves things like that, that ethical concerns aside this is a very energy-intensive thing and the production of an electric vehicle especially one that has 220 40 300 miles of range uses a huge amount of energy, and ocelot in electric vehicles already far more polluting in a regular vehicle of course as the regular vehicle bounces out, and to be fair compared to a regular gasoline burning vehicle with an average amount of highway mileage per gallon.
[39:22] Over the course of the life of the electric vehicle even if it's being charged by polluting coal-burning plants you're probably going to come out more efficient, then the traditional internal combustion engine car so that you know this is a better alternative to what we have.
[39:39] Fully electric vehicle rbe V battery electric vehicle like we see as produced by Tesla is a worse choice, having a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle which is a sort of mess between the two so I'll take a look at a vehicle at the Chevy Bolt which has a small battery pack that drives it may be 70 miles and then a basically what is a generator a gas-powered engine in it that will charge the battery pack and provide power to the rest of the car should the battery be emptied and allows you to drive indefinitely that way. Refueling at traditional gas stations. No because this battery pack for this car is smaller because the car overall is lighter cuz he's battery packs again are very heavy the lifetime vehicle emission output of this partially gasoline burning car.
[40:25] Actually much less than fully electric vehicle so paradoxically what we think as the green is possible choice, is battery powered fully like your thing that never touches any fossil fuel at least initially though down the supply chain admittedly does what you know that is a worse choice for the Earth than a car that burns some gasoline, cuz most of our data Dory driving is short distances you charge overnight we don't do this often times the long trips that do require 200 miles of 300 miles of battery capacity. But that's not how they're sold their soul as a mission to save the Earth, you know a lot of that Tesla fans will go on about how they're changing the Earth are saving the Earth from environmental catastrophe that Elon Musk is here for doing this he's not he's just a guy who found a way to sell cars to suckers to Richmond, and you mentioned earlier to Daniel. There's no reason every time you buy a new car you're doing far far far more worse for the environment and you would be just continuing to drive the same car. Is a production at new vehicle is really bad.
[41:23] So these economic incentives that the government has put down and we put down for purchasing these new vehicles or or leasing even worse vehicles and constantly moving to a new one every three years 2 years 5 years whatever, these are much worse than continue to drive the same even slightly polluting vehicle so what we're doing in this greenwashing campaign is taking rich people, we're already putting more than everybody else we're giving economic incentives in the forms of typically tax credits for Ev purchase is to buy new vehicles which are polluting more in that process of being a new vehicle instead of driving the same old ones and then, because they are for electric vehicles Target at these things that are worse. Denny's parsley hybrid electric vehicles which admittedly do get tax credit but the tax credits should be greater for these mideling vehicles instead of the fully electric ones and these tax credit should also be encouraging the consumption of cheaper, electric vehicles instead of these more expensive ones which is our gain rewarding these people who are, polluting more when the first case and what we've done and what what these subsidies have done is encouraged and reinforce this idea that these products was her really honestly bad. But the Earth are good we just order the market and then even further weave mess it up, with a marketing that occurs through willful ignorance and then also just a misinterpretation of what these basic numbers are and that's that's a common theme in love is greenwashing.
[42:47] Which is this is important remember you now these are General guidelines to remind yourself to think about don't just take these claims at their face value. And if you do that then you really start, getting somewhere with this process but some of these companies are really catching on to this and put it on this guy's it being open and transparent and still screwing around with this soap there's another specific form of greenwashing they called Green stitching if you're talkin my greenwashing in the fashion industry maybe you're familiar with a company called everlane the consoles are radically transparent clothing company that is sustainable and environmentally responsible if you go to their website, they have all sorts of information about the clothes you're buying you can see the factories that they come from allegedly, you can see the process that the pricing like oh it cost this much to make it it cost as much to ship it this is the prophet that were adding on in this is the final price you pay any ideas that like look we're radically open this is transparent and it leaves that word erratically very liberal, look we're so Progressive as a company you were trying to be responsible on this process by our clothes and they're using this isn't working.
[43:56] This is this is how they decided to set themselves apart from other companies and to give you the consumer compelling reason to purchase their clothes as opposed to something else especially when they're putting themselves against these fast fashion brands that we talked about extensively in the show and our episode victims which is incredibly polluting incredibly wasteful industry and absolutely but everything is still committing a lot of these sins in this process, so while some of their stuff may be produced in the sustainable responsible Factory they often times don't talk at all about where to get the raw materials and the products that eventually make these final produce closed so a lot of their fibers are not from sustainable Supply chains or the supply chains aren't certified as such they use lots of synthetics like nylon which come from oil so already they're producing things that are sustainable things that are polluting, but because it's farther down the supply chain evil they're being open about the later parts of it they can wash their hands of that sin and pretend it never happened and that's what's so much of our modern-day greenwashing does it look at this part Pocus on where I want you to see we cleaned up and made a very polished green image but ignore the rest of the stuff that doesn't matter.
[45:06] And we see that idea. Continuously not certain products but the way that companies themselves cities Nations conduct themselves in a green bottle we talked about how Germany or many of these European countries, clean that they're very Green in the way that they treat trashed but that's because they sell their garbage they can't recycle.
[45:29] Exports I can count it not as as as trash I could sail the export we're getting rid of it. And then it ends up in the ocean or ends up in dumps and ends up destroying the environment over there but it's no longer Germany or Switzerland or Sweden or Finland problem and they can pretend that they're meeting all these mandatory regulatory things to sit down and be green. That's green washing but on a national industrial scale.
[45:54] Yes peaking of industrial-scale reminds me of episode 58 renewable problems what we talked about Green Technology solar-power wind power and how, a lot of utility companies take advantage of these international funds have been set up to finance these wind parks around the world or whatever, ultimately what they do is they design profitable energy initiatives and say like southern Mexico, will plan a wind Park but then they'll grossly exaggerate their costs so that they can get this climate funding, then what's the project is implemented not only are they making a profit but they've qualified for carbon-credit so that they can go right back to their home country and Palou just as much if not more than before. Meanwhile touting in their PR copy of all this green technology that they're investing in.
[46:46] Exactly we find this pattern over and over and over again and that is nothing new I mean I can keep going on about everlane but I get to suck down in one single company because everybody is so guilty about. Two looking just at one small section of one small Market group natural and environmentally friendly products that are available on US Supermarket shelves. This is just a great example of how rampant this problem is even just on a consumer-level ignoring all these larger Nation say things that you mentioned. 98% of these items. Call themselves natural or green or environmentally friendly 98% of them available on the supermarket shelves are making some kind of lie they aren't actually what they claim, that means almost every single thing you buy that claims to be green is not in some.
[47:36] Where's this coming from.
[47:38] A testimony made to Congress about this problem from a man named Scott case as part of an environmental consulting firm called her choice. And there's a huge variety of reasons that this happens is right away that happens as we talked about with the sends a lot of them are lies that we talked about these these fake badges that are put on something 22% of these products that make these claims have a badge that actually isn't meaningful bad just a you know like a leaf with a star on it but it there's no organization behind that and then an even bigger problem is a lot of these environmental certification programs are just random people who like okay yeah I will start up a thing and it will rubber-stamp your product as green and we don't care to actually do any due diligence on it we just trust you with what you say and there are at this time when these articles written which was a decade ago this article from 2009 there were 300 of these organizations, around the offer some sort of environmental certification of your product it's the problem has only gotten worse as the number of green products has exploded because consumers prefer, to shop green we know we're destroying the Earth so if we feel like we can alleviate some of that guilt by changing our shopping habits a little bit, getting a couple of cents more than people tend to do that and that is a great profit incentive for these companies to act in bad way.
[49:00] Yeah I think that's such a great example of how, the way the green movement has been whetted to the need for profit accumulation has really just encourage more consumption by us the consumer, and it's kind of enough clearly something's not working when we're trying to save the planet and yet the number of things that were four.
[49:28] Trending. Something has not been working and I want to talk a little bit about this why it's not just that these companies haven't figured out the correct way right to offer product while still remaining green it's it's not a. Issue of we just haven't innovated the correct solution yet but we're working on it we just need more money and research development that's not the problem. The problem is that fundamentally the. The core goal of environmental stewardship is completely incompatible with the current economic structure.
[50:04] And until we see all these goals that are presented in this market language. Consume these goods and will save the Earth invest in this technology and will save the Earth so on and so on and on a broader scale, we see Solutions being offered like on the government or International level such as green taxes green bonds, the cap-and-trade system that was implemented by the European Union I want to just hold it on these real quick because he's our kind of the big like conceptual solutions that a lot of people point to as like look, companies who pollute are bad therefore let's tax them so let me hold it on green taxes for a second because on the face of it it seems like a good idea right the idea being that corporations make money from the production and sale of goods, but they do not necessarily have to pay for the cost that we incur dealing with the pollution and destruction that results from that production, so therefore it let's figure out how much damage is done by let's say an agricultural company that dumps pesticide everywhere let's come up with a dollar figure, and then tax them based on the cost of that damage, and in so doing Wildey incentivize them from doing that action or maybe they'll have to innovate around it right. But the problem with all this is that so long as profit accumulation is the premise of the economy.
[51:31] These taxes will always fall short just consider the coal industry, the ipcc latest report urges Humanity to rapidly cut emissions over the next few years or else a 2-degree warming is going to practically destroy Life as we know it on this planet. And so any appropriate green taxing that we implement. Would necessarily have to make the coal oil and gas companies so unprofitable that they effectively go bankrupt and disappear. In other words these taxes would have to result in industrial diggro.
[52:05] Unsurprisingly no such taxes exist and they will never exist because this would cause widespread unemployment and lead to economic depression and the current economy has no tolerance for that, just like the housing market crash of 2008 was a surprise to mortgage companies whose prediction models literally could not be configured to assume, declining housing values the models our economy is based on has no answers for mass unemployment that result from constricting because it has been set up to assume that the one and only solution for unemployment. Is more growth so no politician would Implement an anti-growth tax policy under that framework. And David if you'll bear with me if I can just rent a little bit more of this I feel like I need to drill down a bit because we have this reactionary narrative that that's going on and I think it's poops a lot of people that says. Will hold up now if you interfere with Marcus or you try to give people basic necessities direc.
[53:06] As it as opposed to letting the free hand of the market provide those then your naivete will result in economic collapse there will be no jobs and everyone will end up in the street eating raw.
[53:19] And I want to reiterate that scenario which an oil company goes bankrupt. And leave thousands of people's without a job that is a problem only in this crazy economy where everyone must compete and fend for themselves we've created this problem think about what it means to have an economy of infant growth what does it actually mean, to pursue infinite Financial growth ultimately it has meant and will continue to mean taking whole chunks of things. And breaking them apart into vulnerable and liquid pieces. What's the weather I mean let me give you an example of visualization if you will an illustration let's say I'm a factory owner. And I have a problem I only have one Factory and if I were to keep growing I need to factories but labor is too expensive I can't afford it.
[54:09] So one weekend I decide to get out of the city and drive around the countryside for some fresh air and what do I see. I see a whole village of people living off the land beating each other with their Gardens and their chickens their cows and all the sudden it hits me these people aren't contributing to the economy who do they think they are just just living enjoying their life growing food for their own consumption write this is a huge problem so I rushed off to the state capitol where I schedule a meeting with the governor and I say. Governor those lazy country bombs are contributing to our economy we need to raise the property taxes on their land so that they have to give back to the economy, and if we do that I'll be more inclined to contribute to your re-election campaign. So that's what we do we raise property taxes for Rural Villages across the state. Which these people cannot afford to pay so they are forced to conform to the market economy a small percentage of them might stay on the land where they convert to Industrial farmers. But the majority have no choice but to migrate to the city looking for work that Community chunk has been broken apart. Individual families and people that I is this Factory owner can now employed as cheap labor. My wealth grows and so does GDP that's growth so fast forward a few years David and now I own five factories. And you being the environmental hippie that you are.
[55:39] You are unhappy with all the pollution that's in your drinking water and you've identified my factories as a source of the problem so you start a campaign to shut them down. But I defeat you because I can say look at how many people I employ if you shut down my back Therese all these people will be out of work, this is a narrative we're stuck on today it's What's blocking direct challenge these companies but it's, if you look at my example David it's very obvious that this problem is contrived it's not a natural law that people become vulnerable unless economies grow it's completely the other way around economies grow precisely because we have made people vulnerable, growth is achieved in the modern economy by breaking things apart in every realm imaginable. You take a diverse forest with countless interdependent species and you break it down into simple two by fours for sale as a material commodity, you take a union which is a chunk of workers who use their Collective voice to protect wages, in addition to other things and you break that apart you start surveilling everyone you fire anyone who's too talkative also that you can lower wages and slash benefits, which gross profits gross GDP.
[56:53] You take a tenant's right organization a chunk of tenants working together to keep rents affordable and you break them apart so you can raise the rent now those tenants can't afford rent just like the villages who can't afford land taxes, they can be atomized even further into cogs for the gig economy they're driving for Uber now they're doing freelance programming.
[57:14] On and on and finally as these trunks get smaller and smaller we see that the individual herself is seen as the final frontier this chunk to be broken down into Parts as car company seek to track our driving habits insurance companies want to know how often we drink water Phone App log hours sleep pattern SmartWatches track our location history facial recognition cameras track our eyeballs as we walk down the aisles of grocery stores and every part of our lives, is turned into a tinier and tinier bit and that is the engine of growth in our economy.
[57:49] Daniel you are preaching to me right now at these are things that we keep talking about.
[57:55] Let me step off my soapbox now.
[57:57] Yeah let me step on these are things we keep talking about in this show we have created a world that is so unbelievably incompatible with sustainable life. Happiness. Living a healthy wholesome life and and then we wonder why we have all these problems why we're all depressed why we're committing suicide why the world is literally burning around us and and we try and bolts on these Solutions. Fundamentally incompatible with the way that we chosen to organize everything carb Busting Out music next to me. Does the cars that bump music really loud always pump really bad music it's never good stuff.
[58:34] Is that a is that deep song You're the better Beat song.
[58:53] You don't like we talked about here with nothing is profitable because we're borrowing from the environment for borrowing from our future we're borrowing extracting wealth from the suffering of others like you so eloquently put, this is a economy this is a global, system of organization and utilization of the material resources that exist on this earth and the labor that we can all put into things built around endless growth built around continuously explaining these things in an evolved ways, generate this GDP they are talking about but of course of course is system that is dependent on all this. Will never be green but the only way that we learn to relate to the world is through this consumption and so when we as individuals. Looking at this world burning around us and we see what what can we do we turn our politicians who have continuously failed us they say oh you know there's not much we can do this is not actually problem at all that gas light is for decades and eventually when they do start saying okay yeah you know global warming is real climate change is a problem these things that are violent the weirdest yeah okay I guess that's bad. Fixing this is going to be too expensive, a green new deal that's infeasible Paris agreement which is already not enough as we talked about on here that's not possible either we're going to step out of that because we don't want to hurt the economy.
[1:00:11] What's interesting when the when the United States wanted to build a nationwide surveillance apparatus. On all of the citizens it had the found the money for that or when when the 2008 Market crashed and Banks didn't have the money to stay afloat we somehow found the money for that. The seat should I go on when we want to expand our military so that we're spending no more than five times every other country combined we somehow find the money for that. You know Global ecologically destruction that will leave no future for our children and grandchildren just don't have the money.
[1:00:54] This is what happens when you have an organization that is fundamentally organized not around environmental sustainability would rather the opposite about the exploitation of the environment we can't just bolt-on V consumption being via rather changing the products that we consume slightly a fix for this because at its core, this is wholly incompatible if we want to imagine a better future we can fix this it has to be at its very fundamental nature something that is revolving around the ecological health of the Earth until you the remotest sliver of anything that is in the system that we have right now and it hasn't been unfortunately either and some of the alternative systems that we seen in the past the communism of Soviet Russia was hugely environmentally destructive, and there are alternatives happening now things that are at its very core ecologically censored we're seeing this occur right now in the revolution is going on with the Kurds in Northern Syria if you're interested in alternatives to the world that we see right now that's a great place to start reading because it is happening and it's, disaster right now after they finally successfully defeated Isis they can start turning to rebuilding a but they are at their core trying to build something that is first and foremost ecologically sustainable and that is there.
[1:02:10] Single greatest guiding tenant and that means dramatically changing every single part of their life and their environment, their relationship with each other their relationship with product the relationship with the world is being shifted hugely, 20 part and it is only possible because they have this disaster around them because they're trying to rebuild a war-torn nation that doesn't even exist these autonomous regions that are just given to them because the Syrian State decided that it's not worth trying to control it. Fortunately the future they decided to find is one that is first and foremost about environmental responsibility and that is the kind of dramatic change that we are going to have to look too if we want to see this because our politicians have abandoned us the promises that these corporations have made for us or nothing but lies greenwashing sins designed to make us feel, comfortable, like we're doing something without its core are changing nothing and this is the problem we have when we've been trained our entire lives to interact with the world interact with each other to interact with change and problems that we need to face first and foremost as consumers. The politicians have failed us so what is a relationship with the greater American economy or Western economy well it's that of consumption. So when we want to do something it's always a boycott it's change products, but those don't work because the products often times are lies the boycotts never end up amounting to anything the bailouts are always forthcoming when the going gets tough from the government.
[1:03:38] We cannot continue to try and fix our future in this process there is no magical technofix there is no consumption fixed we have to put him in his shift everything if we want to see a future that is anyway remotely, not a health care.
[1:03:53] But Meanwhile we're giving these is ridiculous market-based means testing Solutions like cap-and-trade be most boring least efficient possible way to try and build some sort of good into the system, well not actually rocking the boat and envy things are carbon credits cap-and-trade is a Giants game industry where these carbon, credits are price dramatically less than they should be with talked about this before.
[1:04:16] We might have to do a whole episode just related to climate Finance.
[1:04:20] We absolutely will because I know this is such an enormous scam and then to the credit of the view climate deniers who say oh well you know the reason that climate change is being pushed his is Deford to scan that's going on in carbon credits in the green grass and some other sort of right this is a huge scam but one not pushed, to deny you don't have to change or take advantage of this fake thing is, change absolutely of course it is happening but to sort of us wash the guilt of everyone to make these policies Annette so that everyone can can reach their goals on that whatever treaties they sat and actually not change anything in the process when we are responsibly. Actually pricing these credits right that plane ticket across the country that you can buy right now for $300 should be closer to mm. And of course at the stores the economy so course we don't see it put into action.
[1:05:15] Well then in an cap-and-trade kind of experiences the same fate as those green taxes where it is seems like a nice idea front like okay let's Kathy. Amount that an industry can admit and then if they want to admit more they have to somehow purchase credit from someone else who has reduced their mission. Look this is something that was rolled out in 2005 in the European Union and immediately all these industries that would be affected by it started lobbying their politicians to say look, you know this is too costly like you said David sent everything you own nothing is profitable if you actually try to integrate the cost of polluting into the industries that require pollution just to exist, it doesn't it doesn't work they would go out of business all these industries just went to the politician to say if you don't give me special treatment if you don't raise the cap to something that I can actually afford because we live in a globalized economy we're just going to move to another country and you know you'll be left with 200,000 unemployed people in your district and good luck getting elected and that's exactly what happened.
[1:06:16] I want to read another Naomi Klein quote here because she really nails down a lot of these Concepts especially on this show so. Typos and climate change at the battle between capitalism and the planet I'm not saying anything that we don't already know. The battle is already underway but right now capitalism is winning hands down. It went every time the need for economic growth is used as the excuse for putting off climate action yet again over breaking emission reduction commitments already made. Twins win Greeks are told that their only path out of economic crisis is to open up, a beautiful seized the high risk oil and gas drilling kid wins when Canadians are told our only hope I'm not ending up like grease is to allow or boreal forest to be flayed, so we can access the semi-solid bitumen from the Alberta tar Sands it wins when a park in Istanbul is slated for demolition to make way for yet another shopping mall it wins when parents in Beijing are told, sending their wheezing kids to school and pollution mask decorated to look like cute cartoon characters is an acceptable price for economic progress it wins, every time we accept that we have only bad choices available to us austerity or extraction poisoning.
[1:07:35] I suppose that brings us to the tail end of this episode David and where we asked once again what can we do and. I think it's pretty clear what we have to do we have an economic system that is simply incompatible with environmental stewardship. Step one we have to talk about these issues we we have to talk about them because as we were alerted to the green movement these conservation groups as as good as they are putting our faith in the under the current system is. At best delaying the inevitable at worst it's actually accelerating. Some people have to know that something must be done and we have to really emphasize that the current structure cannot solve it.
[1:08:23] And so the only way we're going to solve this is a is a different way a better way I want a quote from Richard Smith a once again from his paper. When you write that the problem is our current economy because it is quote perversely. In the general interest in everyone's immediate interest to do all we can to maximize growth, right now unavoidably and therefore unavoidably to maximize fossil fuel consumption right now because practically every job in the country is in one way or another dependent upon fossil fuel consumption. Any cut back can only come at the expense of massive layoffs for the humans in the Here and Now. Since no one is promising new jobs to all these coal miners oil drillers gas frackers power plant operators farmers and fertilizer manufacturers loggers and Builders Auto Builders truck drivers airplane Builders airline pilots and crew and the countless other occupation to his job would be at risk if fossil fuel use were seriously curtailed, the rational people can understand the science grasp the implications of the failure to act right now and still find they have to live in denial to carry on. Given capitalism they have little choice but to focus on the short-term to prioritize saving their job.
[1:09:48] This sums it up pretty well in my opinion David because. Easy to say climate change is a big deal and that we need to act now and we can make fun of those Working Class People who give in to climate change denial ISM but we should ask ourselves. Do we have an alternative for them when they lose their jobs you know going back to that Rance I was on earlier about how Financial growth requires atomization of people. The opposite of that is necessarily in Building Bridges between ourselves and others building communities raising class-consciousness supporting bottom. Democratic control over resources as opposed to top-down billionaire LED higher keys that is our solution.
[1:10:35] If growth is achieved by Adam ization then we must come back together we must create broad movement and recognize that that's impossible. Without crossing the identity barriers without crossing the cultural divide without crossing the class divides.
[1:10:55] We need airline pilots. To work with truck drivers to work with computer programmers what we talked about in episode 63 busy work about how so much of our current economy is just complete bullshit, write 50% of White Collar work is completely bullshit according to the people who do those jobs that we don't need it. That is an opportunity was terrible it is it is it's an opportunity. It's an opportunity for us to recognize that there's enough work to go around creating a better world we just have to reset our priorities. But that will require us as a people to come together socially and culturally set aside our differences and say look we're all the exploited we're all oppressed we're all. The victims of this slow violence where the land that we live on his literally being poisoned and destroyed and we have no future let's come together and fight.
[1:11:52] Let's take control of the economy let's own the resources underneath our feet let's spread the work so that we can all work of. A 15 hour work week instead of a 40-hour work week and we can prioritize, things that matter like national public transportation like sustainable agriculture so that we can all Escape these food deserts where the only option is processed food that's been shipped Halfway Around the World these are things we can achieve, in 1943 60% of the American population grew Victory Gardens, and those yield made up 42% of the vegetables that were consumed in that year we have the ability to come together and in recognize a common cause and fight for it. We're just going to have to do it then.
[1:12:41] How many times in the show or we can say we have to break down everything and start over if you want to see some sort of dramatic change but that's really what we have to do, we have to be honest with each other that buying more things even if they're slightly more green is not the way to fix these problems we can buy our way out of environmental destruction. It's not going to happen. Into the sooner we admit that the sooner we can encourage these companies now to produce Greener products but just to produce less and we're not going to find this coming from politicians we're going to have to do this ourselves.
[1:13:14] Maybe more than encouraging but just you know collectively make it happen even if it means some companies go out of business.
[1:13:22] Exact maybe the Manning would be a better word or forcing encouraging through. Means that threaten the very survival of the companies I think it is what we have to take and we are seeing more dramatic attacks going on more dramatic direct actions happening in the environmental space right now went past week over a thousand people have been arrested in the UK as part of the extinction Rebellion peaceful protest at our current there and this type of stuff amping up the volume on the resistance that is happening is going to have to happen more more if we want to see a new future that is not like I said over and over a hellscape, with at some point you know no human life left probably civilization as we know it is in our hands right now we're the most powerful generation in all of human history. There's no question about. And we are also probably the last generation that has the time and power to do something about the catastrophes that are coming and if we fail to take advantage of that then we have failed all key.
[1:14:23] Is Naomi Klein one final time. It seems to me that our problem has a lot less to do with the mechanics of solar power than the politics of human power. Specifically whether there can be a shift in who wields it, a shift away from corporations and toward communities which in turn depends on whether or not the great many people who are getting a rotten deal under our current system, can build a determined and diverse enough social Force to change the balance of power David that's a lot to think about.
[1:14:57] As always Daniel but think about it and take action with all this in mind we hope you will. You can find more about all the topics we talked about find all our sources read about the many things we discussed here today this was a full transcript of this episode on our website at ashes ashes.
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