Monday, November 12, 2007

Stars go green

From a recent Arts & Crafts press release:

With the help of Reverb, Stars are going carbon neutral on their current U.S. tour. Buy a carbon-offset sticker at a Stars show, and help build clean, renewable energy sources. Proceeds from each sticker will neutralize the CO2 created from 150 miles of driving. You can help fight global warming by purchasing a sticker or a water bottle at a Stars show. For more information go here.

3 comments:

Unapologetic Winnipegger said...

I have to weigh in on this whole carbon neutral issue. Does this also work in a "moral equivalency" context? Would someone be pardoned for murder if they took it upon themselves to simultaneously save a life?

Why not ask for proceeds and save the sticker and the bottle of water? Think of the production inputs that must go into the latter bottle. Petroleum products for the bottle plus the trucks that must haul it from gig to gig, not to mention hauling the water from the source to begin with. Why not simply get fans to donate money and get them to drink from a water fountain? Better yet, have fans promise to take public transit to the venue instead and keep the money in their wallets.

I think the whole environmental issue would be better addressed if we could concede that pollution is an unfortunate by-product of our existence. The key is to reduce our footprint for the betterment of the generations that follow us. Good intentions such as "carbon neutral" are noble but are not helping much...

J e f f r e y G e o f f r e y said...

I think the carbon-neutral projects should go hand in hand with reducing our environmental footprint. Like buying local, for example. But I *must* travel to Winnipeg each year to see family and I like the idea of having some way to offset the damage that comes from using an airplane

Unapologetic Winnipegger said...

The airplane is a "fixed" environmental cost - it is on a schedule whether you are on it or not. It is therefore preferable for you to take the plane (your extra weight adds very little to the overall additional use of jet fuel) than driving 20 or so hours in your car, thereby adding way more carbon in the process.

If David Suzuki was serious about the environment, he and his entourage would have availed themselves of vacant seats on a Greyhound bus instead of chartering their own. Their incremental carbon consumption would have then been greatly diminished and "amortized" over other additional passengers.

I agree with your buying local idea, provided of course that the goods in question are manufactured just as efficiently as they would be elsewhere. There would be no point in saving the carbon from logistical undertakings (trucking, shipping, etc.) only to have them undermined by less efficient means of production (i.e. toxic effluents, etc).

I think this is where we need a convergence of science and economics - a full life cycle analysis is needed of all consumable goods. The end goal is to minimize the inputs going into everything we produce and consume. Then consumed goods, via recycling, composting, etc. need to be utilized as additional inputs for other goods...