Thursday, April 09, 2020

Britain’s fast fashion poses a grave risk to the environment. The clothes industry produces more than 92 million tonnes of waste a year and consumes 1.5 trillion tonnes of water, scientists have warned

The idea that the bright young things of Britain will refrain from buying clothes is a laugh.

And all modern industrial activities generate pollution of one sort or another so it makes no sense to pick on just one.  Why not pick on woodfires instead?  Because it is "natural", Greenies favour wood fires for domestic heating.  But such fires are now so widely used that air pollution in London is now nearly as bad as it was in the bad old days.  That would seem a clear type of harm rather than the  highly inferential harm caused by  dressing fashionably

And what about synthetics?  Should we use only synthetic fibres instead of cotton?  You can be sure that Greenies would have a kneejerk opposition to that.  Lets all go naked!  You could do that where I live but it might get a bit chilly in a British winter

Britain’s indulgence in fast fashion poses a grave risk to the environment, a new study has found.

The clothes industry produces more than 92 million tonnes of waste a year and consumes 1.5 trillion tonnes of water, scientists have warned, as Britain is singled out as one of fast fashion’s worst offenders.

In the UK more clothes are bought per person per year than anywhere else in Europe, amounting to 59lbs worth in weight, double the global average of 29 lbs.

By comparison Italians buy 32lbs, while Germany came in second with an average of 37lbs.

The analysis published in Nature Reviews Earth & Environment identified the environmental impacts of the fast fashion industry and revealed that Britons are spending an estimated £2.7 billion on items that are worn once....


Carbon dioxide levels are on track to reach the same catastrophic level as 200 million years ago when volcanic eruptions drove HALF of all life on Earth to extinction, study finds

This is brain dead.  Far from CO2 doing harm it is all the other effects of volcanoes that did harm, not just CO2 and not just average temperature  -- sulphur dioxide, for instnce

Humanity is at risk of replicating a devastating mass extinction event that wiped out half of all life on Earth 200 million years ago. 

The so-called End-Triassic Event saw huge carbon dioxide levels driven by volcanic eruptions which led to eventual environmental meltdown.

Scientists studying ancient rock formations found these levels are similar to modern projections for CO2 concentrations by the end of the century. 

Geoscientist Manfredo Capriolo and colleagues found evidence of the ancient volcanic eruptions in basaltic rocks stretching from the US to North Africa.

Global warming, sea level rise and ocean acidification followed the eruptions, the researchers say. 

Mr Capriolo said: 'It is likely [the eruptions] emitted a total volume of CO2 equivalent to that projected from manmade activities during the 21st century, in the 2⁰C warming scenario.'

This is the minimum target above pre-industrial levels set by the Paris Agreement.

Carbon dioxide was found in patches of preserved 'bubbles' caused by the gas during a chemical process known as exsolution.

The samples came from the Central Atlantic Magmatic Province (CAMP) - Earth's biggest igneous province spanning around seven million square miles.

More than 200 pieces of CAMP basaltic lava were scanned from the US, Canada, Morocco and Europe.

Mr Capriolo, a PhD student at the University of Padova, Italy, said: 'The analysed bubble-bearing melt includions strongly suggest the CAMP magmatic system was rich in CO2.'

They were produced by a series of huge eruptions known to have started around 201 million years ago when the world was ocean and one large continent. 

Mr Capriolo said: 'The end-Triassic climatic and environmental changes, driven by the large volume volcanic CO2 emissions, may have been similar to those predicted for the near future under manmade warming.'

There have been five mass extinctions and the End-Triassic was one of the largest.

The latest findings published in Nature Communications add to increasing evidence the sixth has already started - the Anthropocene or 'Manmade' Extinction.

Explosive human population growth, industrial activity and exploitation of natural resources are rapidly pushing many species off the map.

Burning of fossil fuels in particular has had an effect, raising the air's CO2 level more than 40 per cent in just 200 years - a pace possibly as fast, or faster, than that of the End Triassic.


Greening Our Way to Infection

The Covid-19 outbreak is giving new meaning to those “sustainable” shopping bags that politicians and environmentalists have been so eager to impose on the public. These reusable tote bags can sustain the Covid-19 and flu viruses—and spread the viruses throughout the store.

Researchers have been warning for years about the risks of these bags spreading deadly viral and bacterial diseases, but public officials have ignored their concerns, determined to eliminate single-use bags and other plastic products despite their obvious advantages in reducing the spread of pathogens. In New York State, a new law took effect this month banning single-use plastic bags in most retail businesses, and this week Democratic state legislators advanced a bill that would force coffee shops to accept consumers’ reusable cups—a practice that Starbucks and other chains have wisely suspended to avoid spreading the Covid-19 virus.

John Flanagan, the Republican leader of the New York State Senate, has criticized the new legislation and called for a suspension of the law banning plastic bags. “Senate Democrats’ desperate need to be green is unclean during the coronavirus outbreak,” he said Tuesday, but so far he’s been a lonely voice among public officials.

The Covid-19 virus is just one of many pathogens that shoppers can spread unless they wash the bags regularly, which few people bother to do. Viruses and bacteria can survive in the tote bags up to nine days, according to one study of coronaviruses.

The risk of spreading viruses was clearly demonstrated in a 2018 study published in the Journal of Environmental Health. The researchers, led by Ryan Sinclair of the Loma Linda University School of Public Health, sent shoppers into three California grocery stores carrying polypropylene plastic tote bags that had been sprayed with a harmless surrogate of a virus.

After the shoppers bought groceries and checked out, the researchers found sufficiently high traces of the surrogate to risk transmission on the hands of the shoppers and checkout clerks, as well as on many surfaces touched by the shoppers, including packaged food, unpackaged produce, shopping carts, checkout counters, and the touch screens used to pay for groceries. The researchers said that the results warranted the adaptation of “in-store hand hygiene” and “surface disinfection” by merchants, and they also recommended educating shoppers to wash their bags.

An earlier study of supermarkets in Arizona and California found large numbers of bacteria in almost all the reusable bags—and no contamination in any of the new single-use plastic bags. When a bag with meat juice on the interior was stored in the trunk of a car, within two hours the number of bacteria multiplied tenfold.

The researchers also found that the vast majority of shoppers never followed the advice to wash their bags. One of the researchers, Charles Gerba of the University of Arizona, said that the findings “suggest a serious threat to public health,” particularly from fecal coliform bacteria, which was found in half the bags. These bacteria and other pathogens can be transferred from raw meat in the bag and also from other sources. An outbreak of viral gastroenteritis among a girls’ soccer team in Oregon was traced to a resuable grocery bag that had sat on the floor of a hotel bathroom.

In a 2012 study, researchers analyzed the effects of San Francisco’s ban on single-use plastic grocery bags by comparing emergency-room admissions in the city against those of nearby counties without the bag ban. The researchers, Jonathan Klick of the University of Pennsylvania and Joshua Wright of George Mason University, reported a 25 percent increase in bacteria-related illnesses and deaths in San Francisco relative to the other counties. The city’s Department of Public Health disputed the findings and methodology but acknowledged that “the idea that widespread use of reusable bags may cause gastrointenstinal infections if they are not regularly cleaned is plausible.”

New York’s state officials were told of this risk before they passed the law banning plastic bags. In fact, as the Kings County Politics website reported, a Brooklyn activist, Allen Moses, warned that shoppers in New York City could be particularly vulnerable because they often rest their bags on the floors of subway cars containing  potentially deadly bacteria from rats—and then set the bag on the supermarket checkout counter. Yet public officials remain committed to reusable bags.

A headline on the website of the New York Department of Health calls reusable grocery bags a “Smart Choice”—bizarre advice, considering all the elaborate cautions underneath that headline. The department advises grocery shoppers to segregate different foods in different bags; to package meat and fish and poultry in small disposable plastic bags inside their tote bags; to wash and dry their tote bags carefully; to store the tote bags in a cool, dry place; and never to reuse the grocery tote bags for anything but food.

How could that possibly be a “smart choice” for public health? Anyone who has studied consumer behavior knows that it’s hopelessly unrealistic to expect people to follow all those steps. If the Department of Health actually prioritized public health, it would acknowledge what food manufacturers and grocers have known for decades: disposable plastic is the cheapest, simplest, and safest way to prevent foodborne illnesses.

Instead, leaders in New York and other states are ordering shoppers to make a more expensive, inconvenient, and risky choice—all to serve a green agenda that’s actually harmful to the environment. The ban on plastic bags will mean more trash in landfills (because paper bags take up so much more space than the thin disposable bags) and more greenhouse emissions (because of the larger carbon footprints of the replacement bags). And now, probably, it will also mean more people coming down with Covid-19 and other illnesses.


A Crack in the Ice of Climate Censorship

The Chronicle of Philanthropy just published a rare critique of climate alarmism.

The Chronicle of Philanthropy has published an an exchange on climate science and energy economics between the heads of the William and Flora Hewlett and the William E. Simon Foundations.

In the January 2020 issue Hewlett Foundation president Larry Kramer had called on other foundations to join him in focusing their funding ending CO2 emissions, because otherwise they would end destroy everything else that foundations support. In the April issue, Simon Foundation president James Piereson responded with data documenting the absence of dangerous trends in climate variables and the importance of fossil fuels in maintaining human health and progress.  (see link to letter)

CO2 Coalition executive director Caleb Rossiter commented: "This is the first rational debate on the facts I have seen in a number of years in a publication that is not considered 'conservative.' The climate alarmist movement has carried out a systematic and successful campaign to censor opposing views in liberal media and professional journals, as well as on social media like Facebook. This is a real breakthrough that provides hope for policies that protect the environment while meeting the human need for electricity, heating, and economic growth.

"I congratulate the Chronicle of Philanthropy for daring to present Jim Piereson's robust analysis of climate science and energy economics. Let's see if ground zero for censorship, like the New York Times, National Public Radio, and the networks, have the courage to follow the Chronicle's lead."

Via email:


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