Eco-Myths, Eco-Facts

Cutting Edge Magazine
May 1991
Tom Terry

Many of the ideas we hold under the guise of “saving the planet” are really myths propagated with a little mixture of truth. To help you better understand the real, and not-so- real, dangers to the environment, we’ve applied some little-known facts to the beliefs.

Man is destroying the earth.

False. Man is using the earth to his benefit the same as any other species of life would use it. While some individual companies have been irresponsible in handling waste, not all industry follows suit. Besides, where natural and many unnatural disasters have taken place, life is already beginning to be restored.

The United States has the worst record on protecting the environment.

False. Use and abuse are two different things. We may waste more, but we also use more. More waste is a natural byproduct of more use. Secondly, the United States is cleaner than many other nations with its use of protective landfills, specially designed nuclear waste sites and pollution controls. Iraq, the Soviet Union and other third world nations have a long history of poor waste storage and have failed to follow privately led US.
initiatives to increase environmental protection.

Industry rapes the environment.

False again. “Rape” implies intent to harm. Industry needs the environment to sustain itself. Federal regulations and many industry regulations require many companies to restore environmentally sensitive areas after use.

The warming of the earth will cause devastation of plant life.

Unclear. Recent research indicates that many forms of plant life essential to human survival may actually benefit from increased temperatures and carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.

Landfills harm water resources.

Misconception. If landfill operators do not take the proper protective measure, water may be banned if dangerous materials leak into the water table. Waste is separated to prevent possible contamination. The vast majority of landfills have caused no harm to the environment.

Animals and plants that exist in low numbers are endangered.

False. Many species of plants and animals normally exist in low numbers. There are many species of each that man has no interest in for food or industry and thus, even though existing in low numbers, survive just fine.

Auto emissions and industry cause ozone depletion.

False. Less than 5% of ozone-depleting gases are produced by man. If the ozone is depleting, it is happening as a result of natural emissions.

1.) Stephen Schneider- World Monitor, July1990.
2.) “Tree Rings Suggest Warming is Natural.”-Albuquerque Journal.
3.) “Carbon Dioxide Rise May Alter Plant Life.”-New York Times.
4.) “New Study shows nation has cooled a bit since 1920” -Albuquerque Journal, 5/27/90.
5.) WorldMonitor-July1, 1990.