Sure, greenwashing is what Jay called it a long time ago: Greenwashing was first coined in the 1980s by environmentalist Jay Westerveld. The term was in reference to a hotel policy about reusing towels in order to “save the environment,” but in reality, it was just a policy aimed at customers’ environmental sensibilities to reduce laundry costs.
Source: Oxford Learner’s Dictionaries
I was calling this green washing many terms, variations on the theme of greenwashing, such as green-scamming, green-sheening, and eco-porn. Here, a 1992 article, man:
Eco-pornography is the advertising of a product as “environmentally friendly,” when in fact, some unmentioned aspect of the product (or its production and distribution) has notably deleterious effects on the environment. Ecological impact is such a difficult thing to define in terms of the processes of production (as further discussed below), one is hesitant to single out specific corporations as ecopomographers, lest they be unfairly vilified, but it might be informative to mention some egregious examples of false environmental advertising.
According to Bob Garfield, ad critic for Advertising Age Weekly, the most offensive environmental advertisement “is a General Motors corporate ad in which [the company is] congratulating America for 20 years of environmental progress. After spending three decades doing everything in [its] power to weaken, inhibit, and delay environmental legislation…,” this ad is arguably misleading. General Motors is not the only auto manufacturer guilty of greenwash. Adweek chose a Toyota commercial in
which a young woman lauds recycling and her Toyota in the same breath, as one of the worst advertisements of 1990. Said Adweek, “The only Earth-minded tie-in…is the woman’s declaration that, until she can save the world, she’ll buy a Tercel and save money.” (source)
This all seems pretty mild, some 32 years later. It is the driving concept of an Al Gore in his 10,000 square foot mansion flying around the world in private jets, going to Davos and the World Economic Forum and COP#Infinity, lecturing us, we the people, on why Styrofoam and regular lightbulbs are bad bad bad. Well, darn, he has several mansions, one in Tennessee and then one in California: Al Gore’s California home consumes more electricity in 1 year than the average US family uses in 21 years.
Now that’s some eco-porn, man. It’s THAT finger, man, you all know it: from cops to teachers, to city council persons to DMV workers, that FINGER.
Man, Liz Warren, another pornographer —
Elizabeth Warren believes that strengthening the “effectiveness” of the U.S. military is consistent with the Green New Deal. Her bill doesn’t demand that the U.S. military be reduced in size or scale.Nor does it mention that the U.S. military is the world’s largest polluter and user of oil and fossil fuels. Instead of turning the Green New Deal into concrete policy, Warren has placed her attention on renovating the one thousand U.S. military bases that exist domestically and abroad. The so-called “policy wonk” of the 2020 elections appears to be more concerned with creating “green” bombs than a “green economy.”
The U.S. drops a bomb on another nation every twelve minutes . It is no wonder that U.S. military, which serves as the armed body of the state responsible for protecting the interests of Wall Street, fossil fuel corporations, military contractors, and monopolies of all kinds, is treated as a trophy by all sections of the U.S. political class. The U.S. military embodies American exceptionalism claiming to spread democracy and freedom to lands near and far. Holidays such as Memorial Day and Veterans Day are designed to remind Americans of all races and classes that the U.S. is exceptional because of its large military footprint. Instead of seeing this footprint as bombs, sanctions, or deadly raids, Democrat and Republican politicians alike believe that the U.S. military permanently signifies American greatness. (source)
Green bombs, man, and cleaner jet fuel for bombers. That’s the green deal, the eco-porn at its height? Though we have more, as in the figure of the actual “Greens” of Germany:
A motion seeking a ceasefire in Ukraine and another opposing the supply of heavy weapons to Kiev were overwhelmingly rejected by delegates. Green Member of the European Parliament, Sergey Lagodinsky, lambasted the argument of one delegate who warned that Europe would be wiped out after the first nuclear bomb dropped, saying that Ukrainians “cannot defend themselves with sunflowers.”
German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock vehemently advocated the delivery of more weapons and heavy battle tanks to Ukraine. “We support Ukraine, not despite the fact that we are a party of peace and human rights, but because we are a party of peace and human rights,” she stated to justify her advocacy of war.
Party leader Ricarda Lang supported her, saying, “I am convinced we have to deliver more weapons, we have to react faster. The time for hesitation is over.”
Well well, recall how Germany “got rid of” coal and smelting and all of that carbon polluting fun stuff. It’s called offshoring your carbon footprint. All those Southern Hemisphere nations (and Russia) do all the cooking, blasting, mining, milling, and welding of Germany’s fancy bridges and highrises. This is Anna:
Now that is real eco-pornography. Not to the max, but really, this is what the greening of the world means — flights to Ukraine, trillions dumped into weapons, trillions put into satellite, trillions here and trillions there, now that is green pimping to the max. You know, keeping the bankers safe with those diesel and gasoline powered metal and titanium battle tanks, missile launchers, helicopters, jets.
Now here is some real violent eco-porn. Just the headline is triggering. A warning: “Green New Army? NATO Wants Eco-Friendly Tanks — NATO’s tanks may be getting solar panels.” (sources sources)
We get the triple pornography, right, as the USA, the US military, occupies one-third of Syria and steals the oil. Now that is icing on the pornography cake. “The United States forces present in Syrian territory without the consent of the government or the approval of the United Nations, today looted a new batch of oil and transferred it to Iraq.” (source)
Man, I am feeling the green in that raping of a country’s resources. And those hootches above, with solar panels? Nah, not any for Haiti, or Syria or Turkey:
Sure, this rant was precipitated by an article from a real “legit” source, Yale 360 Enviornment. Title: “As Millions of Solar Panels Age Out, Recyclers Hope to Cash In.” The entire green pornography has captured the EU, Canada, USA, other outfits of empire until we have the lunacy of solar panels galore, but with the unintended (nah, very intended, very predictable) consequences of unfettered capitalism pushing the dirty panels (check out the lifecycle and embedded energy and external costs of that solar panel — again, stuff has to be mined, moved, milled, smelted, cooked, chemicalize, and shipped AND then, darn, into the landfills they go after 25 years of use) into the entire eco-pornography game.
Next, the panels are ground, shredded, and subjected to a patented process that extracts the valuable materials — mostly silver, copper, and crystalline silicon. Those components will be sold, as will the lower-value aluminum and glass, which may even end up in the next generation of solar panels.
This process offers a glimpse of what could happen to an expected surge of retired solar panels that will stream from an industry that represents the fastest-growing source of energy in the U.S. Today, roughly 90 percent of panels in the U.S. that have lost their efficiency due to age, or that are defective, end up in landfills because that option costs a fraction of recycling them.
You see the trifecta here of green porn? Selling panels as a panacea, of course, that means SELLING (profitting from the so-callled “helping the planet’s climate heating”) the goods, mining the minerals and then, yep, they have an end life cycle, and instead of mandating recycling them and making better and longer (durable) solar panels, it’s let the market pimp, prosttitute, steal, hoard, tax, fine, certify. ALL for profit. What could go wrong, no, profitting from green washing?
Again, the word “value” comes into play with eco-pornography: By 2050, the value of raw materials recoverable from solar panels could exceed $15 billion.
It gets wonky, this LCA just for ONE type of photo-voltaic panel: “Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) of perovskite PV cells projected from lab to fab” Ah, note that this is only to the fabrication level. Not all the embedded energy and expelled energy to mine, smelt, move, chemicalize, produce, move, install, AND then uninstall and then either throw away or “recycle.” No cradle to cradle shit here.
Like I said, wonky: “cradle to gate” is yet more of this eco-pornography terminology.
Perovskite photovoltaic cells (PVs) have attracted significant worldwide attention in the past few years. Although the stability of the power conversion is a concern, there is great potential for perovskites to enter the global PV market. To determine the future potential of perovskites, we performed a cradle-to-gate environmental life cycle (LCA) for two different perovskite device structures suitable for low cost manufacturing. Rather than examining current laboratory deposition processes like dipping and spinning, we considered spray and co-evaporation methods that are more amenable to manufacturing. A structure with an inorganic hole transport layer (HTL) was developed for both solution and vacuum based processes, and an HTL-free structure with printed with back contact was modeled for solution based deposition. The environmental impact of conventional Si PV technology was used as a reference point. The environmental impacts from manufacturing of perovskite solar cells were lower than that of mono-Si. However, environmental impacts from unit electricity generated were higher than all commercial PV technology mainly because of the shorter lifetime of perovskite solar cell. The HTL-free perovskite generally had the lowest environmental impacts among the three structures studied. Solution based methods used in perovskite deposition were observed to decrease the overall electricity consumption. Organic materials used for preparing the precursors for perovskite deposition were found to cause a high marine eutrophication impact. Surprisingly, the toxicity impacts of the lead used in the formation of the absorber layer were found to be negligible. Energy payback times were estimated as 1.0–1.5 years.
So for the average greenie, well, this stuff is WAY beyond their “green washing wet behind the ears” knowledge base: “Deposition Process – The PLD process involves the use of high-power laser energy focused on a target to evaporate its surface in vacuum or different low-pressure ambient gas. From: Laser Surface Modification of Biomaterials, 2016
The pornography is also in the rhetoric, the motivations of technologists, technocrats, scientists, the lot of them working on these highly technical projects. It is driven by the bizarrely human quest to see if we can do it mentality. That quest is of course driven by profit motives. Not so much about saving the world.
Dystopia is the end product of having billionaires and collective lobbies of Eichmann’s and Mengele’s and Edward Bernay’s and Tom Friedman’s rule the world, as Top Dog Green Pimps but also Top Green Bordella Owners.
Look how superficial this marketing crap is — “raw materials”. What’s the energy, cultural, economic, and societal outlay for that?
The most commonly used photovoltaics consist of monocrystalline or multicrystalline silicon. The main negative environmental impact of these panels comes from the production phase and include:
- The energy consumed during production of the panels and the emissions released during production
- Water consumption
- The release of some hazardous byproducts .
The environmentally relevant substances released during the production phase of silicon solar panels are fluorine, chlorine, nitrate, isopropanol, SO2, CO2 and respirable silica particles and solvents.
However, over the course of their lifetime, crystalline solar panels generate 9-17 times the energy used to produce them, depending on their placement and efficiency. Also, depending on the type of PV technology, the clean energy pay back takes place in one to four years. Once in place, solar systems using photovoltaics are 100% emissions free. The production of 1,000 kWh of solar electricity reduces emissions by nearly 8 pounds of sulfur dioxide, 5 pounds of nitrogen oxides, and more than 1,400 pounds of carbon dioxide. (follow the money, the financing, the banking, the investing, the scamming of government-taxpayer funds)
Talk about some slick green porn? So all that renewable energy just comes from heaven. Those dams, those solar panels, those wind turbines, all the wires, plastics, rubbers, strategic metals, transportation, MINING. Ccomes from Green Heaven! Whew!
You want to get wonky? I’ve written about this before — the single use shopping bag legislation/laws. The reality is that paper bags are bad bad bad. And, in reality, the single use bags, if used properly, go into a small gabage pail in the house, and many are used as bags for produce in the fridge and for poop/cat liter. Triple reuse power of the bag. Again, unintended consequences. Countless millions of lifetime hours spent just one aspect of greening the economy:
Summary and recommendations The authors are satisfied that they have achieved their goal to provide a comparative assertion among the six types of grocery carrier bags included in the report based on their respective potential environmental impacts. The carrier bags selected were those in most common use in the United States and the underlying data were, as far as is possible, based on United States data.
Our results are based on a study of twelve environmental impact categories. Our results show that reusable LDPE and NWPP bags will have lower average impacts on the environment compared to PRBs if the reusable bags are reused for a sufficient number of grocery shopping trips. However, according to a recent national survey, a majority of consumers do not reuse their reusable bags for this sufficient number of trips, especially for LDPE bags. Moreover, 40% of people forget to bring their reusable bags with them to the store and half the people who prefer NWPP bags used PRBs at their most recent shopping trip. In addition, only 15% of people follow the recommended cleaning procedures to ensure safe use of reusable bags.
Our results also show that Paper bags, even with 100% recycle content, have significantly higher average impacts on the environment than either of the reusable bags or PRBs. Many of the regulations now in place or being considered in the United States encourage consumers to use reusable bags through banning PRBs and imposing a fee on the use of Paper bags. (Californians Against Waste, 2013) (Florida Department of Environmental Protection, 2013) A number of grocery chains in non-legislated areas provide Paper bags and sell various reusable bags. Our results in this study show that these regulations and policies may result in negative impact on the environment rather than positive.
Even though Paper bags come from a renewable resource and are easily recycled, it is likely that they are not the best environmental choice. Reusable bags should only be preferred if consumers are educated to use them safely and consistently, and reuse them enough times to lower their relative environmental impacts compared to PRB alternatives.
Our recommendation, based on our work in this study, is that consumers should be given a choice between reusable bags and PRBs and that any of these should be preferred over Paper bags. Most important is that much more attention should be focused on educating consumers to make an informed choice of which bags to use by providing them facts—facts about reusable bag use, facts about proper recycling or disposal of PRBs, facts about the potential environmental impacts of their choices—based on sound scientific evidence. (check it out — 194 pages just for the PRB — plastic retail bag)
I was a sustainability director for a community college in Spokane, the first in the town with several colleges as anchors there. I did a lot of fairs, talks, teach-ins; I had famous authors come into town to speak, to be on my radio show, and I featured many in my articles for the weekly newspaper and the monthly magazine and a blog with the daily newspaper.
Yeah, I was skeptical of all the rah-rah, and I was lambasted for putting down COPs and Gore and Obama and the so-called new green deal. I even was trained in sustainability education and monitoring. American Planning Association:
When I was in Vancouver, for the Summer Institute for Sustainable education, I was the ONLY person questioning the motives of big outfits like Unilever and Proctor and Gamble and others tied to this “sustainability” initiative. I like being in that position, the outsider, the questioner, ebut really, there can be sort of an emptiness in being around these people at universities, especially the University of British Columbia. I talked to mayors, planners, business leaders, and others who were hyper glassy eyed about sustainability — Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) Investing.
Green washing, green pornography, green sheening, and now, green hushing: A trend known as “green hushing” is growing as companies are increasingly choosing not to publicise details of their climate targets in an attempt to avoid scrutiny and allegations of greenwashing, a new study showed. This of course is a double whammy:
“If green hushing becomes a trend, it will make inspiring some of the climate laggards even harder,” she said. “As long as companies are transparent about their progress, and communicate that in a transparent way, then they can’t go wrong.”
The reality is that this is triple-green washing, almost coming back as the dirtiest game in town — killing people: “Why the New Deal for Nature is a disaster for people and planet”
The conservation industry says 2020 is its “super year.” It wants to set aside thirty percent of the globe for wildlife, and divert billions of dollars away from reducing climate change and into “natural climate solutions.” This would be a disaster for people and planet. Conservation was founded in the racist ideology of 1860s USA but it committed thirty years ago to becoming people-friendly. It hasn’t happened. There will be more promises now, if only to placate critics and funders like the U.S. and German governments, and the European Commission, which are paying for conservation’s land theft, murder and torture. More promises will be meaningless. No more public money should go for “Protected Areas” until the conservation bodies recognize their crimes, get rid of those responsible, and hand stolen lands back, with compensation. Conservation NGOs must also stop cozying up to mining, logging, oil, and plantation companies.
And it only gets worse, much worse. Reading articles and watching videos from Alison’s “Wrench in the Gears” can take us all to a more nano-level of the green washing to the max concept, as in profits on data, on wearables, on digital dungeons. Here’s a recent one, but go backwards and catch up on that entire investing and AI-VR-AR scheme: “God’s Eye View Part 6 – Every Man Thus Lives By Exchanging“
You will get very few people going into these weeds:
Based on what I am seeing in the Web3 space, I’m picturing a new NGO culture emerging in which Decentralized Autonomous Organizations (DAOs), with a pretense of tokenized cooperative governance, manage legions of platform laborers all tied to ledgers and wearable tech. Algorithms weigh individual needs against those of the collective and mete out payments for digital public goods production. Officials, whether they understand it or not, are setting citizens up to become precarious impact commodities for high frequency options trading. One hand washes the other as the masses are made to power the matrix and build out digital empire. Everyone plays their assigned role in the spectacle advancing the plot without wrapping their minds around the game they’re in or comprehending what the stakes are. (McDowell)
More weeds? Silicon Icarus:
Here, a typical piece: “Programmable Freedom – Smart Contracts, Blockchain and the Holy Grail of Central Banking” Let’s call this digital green washing:
The unification of traditional finance and so-called ‘Decentralized Autonomous Organizations’ propels the evolution of legal abstractions to digital standards. These standards, along with their legal counterparts, form the infrastructure for the large-scale control of society through impact finance, revamped educational credentials, digital health records, fake environmentalism, geo-fencing, smart cities, internet-enabled nanotechnology and all of the other crazy ‘use cases’ such technology makes possible. The move towards robust CBDC networks by central banks all over the world, provides even more momentum to this future. (source)
Yikes, I am going deeper and deeper off-topic, except it really isn’t off topic. It’s all about “who makes the money, who controls the food, who controls the data, who controls the ants/prols/Us?”
Elites, man, rubbing elbows with technocrats and coders and geniuses: From Wrench in the Gears:
Adam Smith opens his “Wealth of Nations” with a story of the efficiencies created in a pin factory where workers were assigned discrete tasks along the production line, the division of labor expanded production netting significant profits for the factory owner. Later, in chapter four, Smith writes, “Every man thus lives by exchanging,” a quote inscribed on one side of a luxurious bronze gas lamp located in the atrium just outside the Debate Room at Old Parkland in Dallas, the city’s most elite corporate address.
Building off energy futures trading, the Dallas old guard is making its move to set up markets in human capital management, led by the Commit! Partnership with Goldman Sachs and JP Morgan standing in the shadows. That lamp stands opposite an elaborately carved portico topped by a large gilded owl. On either side are four paintings. The upper tier shows Watson and Crick and their DNA model on the one side and on the other side Steve Jobs with an orange Apple desktop showing the Pixar movie “Up.” Below is FDR and Eisenhower on one side and Churchill and Truman on the other. What this says to me is that we’re being pulled into a new “war,” a war on consciousness and human agency even as we are being told mythic stories about scientific progress.
The last couple of generations has amply demonstrated that meetings of corporate heads, NGOs, politicians, and celebrities are not going to solve the crises of climate and biodiversity. Those attending are amongst the major contributors to the problems, and least willing to accept any change which might threaten their position. They argue over statements that no one actually applies, or even intends to, and which are replete with clauses ensuring “business as usual.” The meetings and declarations attract an enormous media circus, but are akin to the emperor’s workshop, with hundreds of tailors busily cutting suits of such rarefied material that they don’t cover his nakedness. (source)
Cory Morningstar, investigative journalist and environmental activist explains how the Green New Deal for Nature was created by the UN in 2009 to monetise nature and create economic growth, Cory points us to build local resistance, to build strong alliances and to protect our lands, waters and communities with No Deal for Nature.
3 thoughts on “Green Death: Love in a Time of Green Pornography”
Short, but sweet?
I like Allison.
She’s into subjects that, sometimes, feel over my head.
I like Cory, too.
I seem to comprehend her better.
It doesn’t seem like global warming.
The world seems like it’s getting colder.
It gets tricky. Yep, a world without ICE is warming, heating, and the jew stream has shifted many times bringing in warmer air, and the climate chaos of course gives us snow in Hawaii in June, but alas, those ice core experts from dozens of countries are not a conspiracy. Under a Green Sky. Peter Ward. However, we have to work as a WORLD, all nations, working to contract toward high tech (not polluting and surveillance) and get people medicines, health food, crops, clean water, light bulbs, fans, and alas, we need to not go back to the stone age, but we need to STOP planned and perceived OBSOLESCENCE! This is the perversity of CAPITALISM and CONSUMERISM and UNFETTERED MONEY making and MONEY laundering.
Complicated. Does Co2 register as part of the warming? Well, of course, but this is not a Greta World, it is a Survival International world, an anti- food and land grab world of Monsanto, Gates, the other mother fuckers.
But then, we have not real discourse, and we need to use oil, unfortunately, and we need plastics, unfortunately, but we need MASSIVE controls on this retail bullshit.
Scary stuff, no? Speciesism, and we now are in WAR WAR when China wants people coming together. It may seem counterintuitive, but the West is dirty and viral, and China is holistic and for the people.
USA wants to kill kill kill, and the USA sees adversaries and sees enemies, and we have spooks, CIA and DARPA and generals to guide these pencil neck neoliberals and neocons.
THis is America in a nutshell so many ways: Watch,
I’m of the mind that various particulate matter is causing the biosphere to warm unnaturally.
While those ingredients, and more, and turning the human spirit icy.
Short, but sweet, isn’t always the best way to communicate a vague idea.
I’ll do better, next time.