February 28, 2009

What A Bunch Of Crap

The Eco-nazis are now saying our problems are all behind us, but not in a good way: "American Taste For Soft Toilet Roll 'Worse Than Driving A Hummer'"

Oh, the horror. The HORROR!

The tenderness of the delicate American buttock is causing more environmental devastation than the country's love of gas-guzzling cars, fast food or McMansions, according to green campaigners. At fault, they say, is the US public's insistence on extra-soft, quilted and multi-ply products when they use the bathroom.

Wiping while the Earth burns, I suppose.

"This is a product that we use for less than three seconds and the ecological consequences of manufacturing it from trees is enormous," said Allen Hershkowitz, a senior scientist at the Natural Resources Defence Council.

Three seconds? Uh, Allen - Y'all mind not standing up-wind of me? Thankee.

"Future generations are going to look at the way we make toilet paper as one of the greatest excesses of our age. Making toilet paper from virgin wood is a lot worse than driving Hummers in terms of global warming pollution." Making toilet paper has a significant impact because of chemicals used in pulp manufacture and cutting down forests.

Yeah, ranks right up there with nuclear proliferation and the gulag.

By the way, has anyone bothered to study the impact of having to put more soap down the drain as a result of all the extra hand-washing involved in dealing with inferior paper products? Not to go all Felix Ungar or anything, but one has one's standards of cleanliness. Unless one is a NRDC hippy, I suppose.

A campaign by Greenpeace seeks to raise consciousness among Americans about the environmental costs of their toilet habits and counter an aggressive new push by the paper industry giants to market so-called luxury brands.

More than 98% of the toilet roll sold in America comes from virgin forests, said Hershkowitz. In Europe and Latin America, up to 40% of toilet paper comes from recycled products. Greenpeace this week launched a cut-out-and-keep ecological ranking of toilet paper products.

Interesting, that hyping on the "virgin" forests. Religion may be dead to these people, but the symbols are still useful.

As for the trees, know why they're virgin? Because they're forests (mostly of very fast-growing slash pine) grown by the paper companies....specifically for the purpose of harvesting and turning into paper products! You may as well talk about "virgin" corn fields.

Oh, and here's the other thing. Let's say that, as Greenpeace wants, we embark on a massive campaign to use recycled products to wipe our heinies. Paper demand drops. Good news for the environment, right? Wrong! The paper companies, as eco-conscious as they have become, are not holding vast amounts of forest property merely for philanthropic reasons. They're in it for the money. If the land no longer pays, they're going to sell it. And at least in the Southeastern United States - where an awful lot of this kind of timbering occurs - do you know who is most likely to buy such holdings? I'll tell you from personal observation: Developers looking to build golf courses and retirement communities.

Now exactly how much more "eco-friendly" is that than farming the same land for trees?

Go read the rest of the article if you want, but as you can imagine, it kinda stinks.

Posted by Robert at February 28, 2009 03:52 PM | TrackBack

And in the SE US (like here in Georgia), trees are grown like any other cash crop: Plant 'em, let 'em grow, harvest 'em, replant the acreage. Just like wheat. Only it takes years instead of months for the crop to come to maturity.

I don't know what "virgin" forests these knuckleheads are talking about, unless they think that planted, cultivated forests are "virgin" because hippies don't come in and eff them up.

By the way, here's the Georgia Forestry Commission site's price list for seedlings:

Posted by: Unsupervised at February 28, 2009 04:29 PM

The SE isn't the only part of the country where trees are grown as a renewable cash crop -- I'm just waiting for them to start targeting Christmas Trees. Oregon's the #1 grower around, and a blue state -- it's always fun watching them eat their own.

Posted by: Boy Named Sous at February 28, 2009 05:19 PM

I will fight to the death for my ultra soft Charmin.

Posted by: Rachel at March 1, 2009 12:42 PM