22 February 2006


Bruce Taylor pointed this article out: it's here. One especially cogent point:
In a free market economy, can we really expect industry to adopt sustainable manufacturing processes?

No, we can’t. The way that a free market economy works is that it must have unfettered access to natural resources and also to labor. But if it doesn’t have unfettered access to natural resources, it can’t compete.

Now, there is this rise of green capitalism. Aspects of it are positive and very agreeable. We need to be able to reuse the commodities that we make and sell over and over again. And we need to re-design the production process. All of that is right on track. But green capitalists say that all these things can happen voluntarily, that when companies become aware of the damage they’re doing, eventually they’ll start making the right choice.

In my assessment, what happens when companies do this is one of two things. If you’ve got a company and you’ve decided to go green, it’s going to cost more. You’re going to be competing with companies that aren’t doing that, and aren’t incurring the greater cost. Either that’s going to drive you out of business, or into the realm of manufacturing luxury items to sell to people who have now embraced this whole new level of consumption that’s connected to organic living, organic lifestyles. But those goods aren’t available to working class families or to people who live in public housing. Those are high-end consumer items. So, that kind of change is not going to affect a greater change across the board.
Hurray for Heather Rogers.


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