Friday, July 16, 2010

Environmental Damage

According to an unreleased report by the United Nations Environment Programme that took 8 years to produce, the world's 3,000 biggest public companies created $2.2 trillion in environmental damages in 2008 alone! Here are two articles by The Guardian and the American Society of Landscape Architects about this report. The study was conducted by Trucost. A final version will be made public.

It would seem only normal and fair if these large corporations were to pay to undo these damages. If they were to pay these $2.2 trillion in environmental repair, they would still take an incredible $4 trillion home in profits. However, today's politicians are far away from putting regulations in place or enforcing existing laws to hold corporations responsible for their environmental damage. Sad. Even more sad if you consider that the cost of the environmental repair for their pollution would only be a third of their profits.

The report also states that the $2.2 trillion is only a lower boundary of the cost, as it does not take into account long term effects and the cost of toxic waste, the cost of social impact, etc. The final version of the report will include some of these costs.

We clearly live in a world with no appreciation or understanding of the value of nature, which lead to the  creation of two sets of rules: Rules for you and me: You do damage, you will be forced to fix it. Rules for the large corporations: Profit is everything without regard to environmental damage.

No comments:

Post a Comment