Factory Pollution Quotes

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We know, at least, that this decision (ending factory farming) will help prevent deforestation, curb global warming, reduce pollution, save oil reserves, lessen the burden on rural America, decrease human rights abuses, improve publish health, and help eliminate the most systematic animal abuse in history.
Jonathan Safran Foer (Eating Animals)
One hundred and fifty years ago, the monster began, this country had become a place of industry. Factories grew on the landscape like weeds. Trees fell, fields were up-ended, rivers blackened. The sky choked on smoke and ash, and the people did, too, spending their days coughing and itching, their eyes turned forever toward the ground. Villages grew into town, towns into cities. And people began to live on the earth rather than within it.
Patrick Ness (A Monster Calls)
This was a normal town once, and we were normal people. Most of us worked at the plastics factory on the outskirts of town. Then one day there was an accident... something escaped from the factory, a yellow gas. It floated over the town so fast that we didn't see it, didn't realize... and then it was too late, and Dark Falls wasn't a normal town anymore.
R.L. Stine (Welcome to Dead House (Goosebumps, #1))
You never think it's gonna happen to you, but all that pollution and dirty fumes and flights and factories and shit we don't need and suddenly there you are, a stupid girl sitting alone on some steps, waiting to see if your family is ever coming back.
Saci Lloyd (The Carbon Diaries 2015 (Carbon Diaries, #1))
I asked the feedlot manager why they didn't just spray the liquefied manure on neighboring farms. The farmers don't want it, he explained. The nitrogen and phosphorus levels are so high that spraying the crops would kill them. He didn't say that feedlot wastes also contain heavy metals and hormone residues, persistent chemicals that end up in waterways downstream, where scientists have found fish and amphibians exhibiting abnormal sex characteristics.
Michael Pollan (The Omnivore's Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals)
It's quite simple, they poisoned it with smoke, chemicals and pollution from factories and cars, and power stations. Silly humans knew what they were doing, but carried on poisoning the planet anyway.
Richard J. Ward (The Hermit and the Time Machine)
Each day we wake up and make myriad choices that affect others. We clothe ourselves with shirts, pants, and shoes that may have been sewn together by women working in factories fourteen-plus hours a day for a nonliving wage; we buy products manufactured in ways the destroy forests, pollute waterways, and poison the air; we wash our hair with shampoos that may have been squeezed into the eyes of conscious rabbits or force-fed to them in quantities that kill; and on and on. As Derrick Jensen has written in his book "The Culture of Make Believe", "It is possible to destroy a culture without being aware of its existence. It is possible to commit genocide or ecocide from the comfort of one's living room
Zoe Weil (Most Good, Least Harm: A Simple Principle for a Better World and Meaningful Life)
And one clouded stream that never ran dry was that choked with the scum of humanism, the poison spewed out by the factory at its headwaters. There it was: its lights burning brilliantly as it worked even through the night - the factory of Western European ideals. The pollution from that factory degraded the exalted fervor to kill; it withered the green of the sakaki's leaves.
Yukio Mishima (Runaway Horses)
Why do we need so many people on Earth? I ask you. What are they good for? They live out ludicrous lives of pointless desperation. Ninety-nine percent of the human population is so much wasted resources. Stubborn vermin, we humans are. Granted, in the past, the unwashed masses were necessary. We needed them to till our fields and fight our wars. We needed them to labor in our factories making consumer crap that we flipped back at them at a handsome profit. Alas, those days are gone. We live in a boutique economy now. Energy is abundant and cheap. Mentars and robotic labor make and manage everything. So who needs people? People are so much dead white. They eat up our profits. They produce nothing but pollution and social unrest. They drive us crazy with their pissing and moaning. I think we can all agree that Corporation Earth is in need of a serious downsizing. ... The boutique economy has no need of the masses, so let's get rid of them. But how, you ask? Not with wars, surely, or disease, famine, or mass murder. Despots have tried all these methods through the millennia, and they're never a permanent solution. No, all we need to do is buy up the ground from under their feet -- and evict them. We're buying up the planet, Bishop, fair and square. We're turning it into the most exclusive gated community in history. Now, the question is, in two hundred years, will you be a member of the landowners club, or will you be living in some tin can in outer space drinking recycled piss?
David Marusek (Mind Over Ship)
Try as you might, you'll never be able to please an environmentalist. You can stop using coal to heat your house, you can stop throwing out bottles and cans, you can have every factory in Canada shut down and you can buy only organic gluten-free non-GMO food, you can give up your favorite station wagon for a weird electric hybrid, you can stop developing film and buy a never-ending cycle of digital cameras, you can give up your job at a refinery or mill, and they'll still get after you for not enjoying yourself while doing so.
Rebecca McNutt
If we are at all serious about ending factory farming, then the absolute least we can do is stop sending checks to the absolute worst abusers. For some, the decision to eschew factory-farmed products will be easy. For others, the decision will be a hard one. To those for whom it sounds like a hard decision (I would have counted myself in this group), the ultimate question is whether it is worth the inconvenience. We know, at least, that this decision will help prevent deforestation, curb global warming, reduce pollution, save oil reserves, lessen the burden on rural America, decrease human rights abuses, improve public health, and help eliminate the most systematic animal abuse in world history.
Jonathan Safran Foer (Eating Animals)
One instance of this failure is the case of smoke, as well as air pollution generally. In so far as the outpouring of smoke by factories pollutes the air and damages the persons and property of others, it is an invasive act. It is equivalent to an act of vandalism and in a truly free society would have been punished after court action brought by the victims. Air pollution, then, is not an example of a defect in a system of absolute property rights, but of failure on the part of the government to preserve property rights. Note that the remedy, in a free society, is not the creation of an administrative State bureau to prescribe regulations for smoke control. The remedy is judicial action to punish and proscribe pollution damage to the person and property of others.48 In
Murray N. Rothbard (Man, Economy, and State / Power and Market: Government and Economy)
An industrial map in the mid-twentieth century colored New York’s Hudson River black. The mapmakers considered a black river a good thing—full of industry! The more factory outputs, the more progress. When that map was made, “nature” was widely seen as a resource to be exploited. Few people considered the consequences of careless disposal of industrial waste. The culture has shifted dramatically over the last fifty years. When I share this story today, most people shudder and ask how anyone could think of a polluted river as good.   But today we are doing the same thing with the river of culture. Think of the arts and other cultural enterprises as rivers that water the soil of culture. We are painting this cultural river black—full of industry, dominated by commercial interests, careless of toxic byproducts—and there are still cultural mapmakers who claim that this is a good thing. The pollution makes it difficult to for us to breathe, difficult for artists to create, difficult for any of us to see beauty through the murk.
Makoto Fujimura (Culture Care: Reconnecting with Beauty for our Common Life)
In this world, as in our own, nearly all the chief means of production, nearly all the land, mines, factories, railways, ships, were controlled for private profit by a small minority of the population. These privileged individuals were able to force the masses to work for them on pain of starvation. The tragic farce inherent in such a system was already approaching. The owners directed the energy of the workers increasingly towards the production of more means of production rather than to the fulfilment of the needs of individual life. For machinery might bring profit to the owners; bread would not. With the increasing competition of machine with machine, profits declined, and therefore wages, and therefore effective demand for goods. Marketless products were destroyed, though bellies were unfed and backs unclad. Unemployment, disorder, and stern repression increased as the economic system disintegrated. A familiar story! As conditions deteriorated, and the movements of charity and state-charity became less and less able to cope with the increasing mass of unemployment and destitution, the new pariah-race became more and more psychologically useful to the hate-needs of the sacred, but still powerful, prosperous. The theory was spread that these wretched beings were the result of secret systematic race-pollution by riff-raff immigrants, and that they deserved no consideration whatever. They were therefore allowed only the basest forms of employment and the harshest conditions of work. When unemployment had become a serious social problem, practically the whole pariah stock was workless and destitute. It was of course easily believed that unemployment, far from being due to the decline of capitalism, was due to the worthlessness of the pariahs.
Olaf Stapledon (Star Maker)
Many of the streams that feed the river of culture are polluted, and the soil this river should be watering is thus parched and fragmented. Most of these we know, but let me briefly touch on some of the fault lines in the cultural soil (starving the soul) as well as some of the sources of the poisons in the water (polluting the soul).   Starving the cultural soul   One of the most powerful sources of cultural fragmentation has grown out of the great successes of the industrial revolution. Its vision, standards, and methods soon proliferated beyond the factory and the economic realm and were embraced in sectors from education to government and even church. The result was reductionism. Modern people began to equate progress with efficiency. Despite valiant and ongoing resistance from many quarters—including industry—success for a large part of our culture is now judged by efficient production and mass consumption. We often value repetitive, machine-like performance as critical to “bottom line” success. In the seductive industrialist mentality, “people” become “workers” or “human resources,” who are first seen as interchangeable cogs, then treated as machines—and are now often replaced by machines.
Makoto Fujimura (Culture Care: Reconnecting with Beauty for our Common Life)
Compared to cotton, synthetic fibers require a lot less water to produce, but that’s not necessarily a good enough argument for using them, since they have other significant impacts: they are still made of oil, and their production can require a lot of energy. MIT calculated that the global impact of producing polyester alone was somewhere between 706 million metric tons of carbon dioxide, or about what 185 coal-fired power plants emit in a year.2 Samit Chevli, the principal investigator for biomaterials at DuPont, the giant chemical company, has said that it will be hundreds of years before regular polyester degrades.3 Plus, while the chemicals used in production typically aren’t released to the environment, if factories don’t have treatment systems in the last phase of production, they can release antimony, an element that can be harmful to human health, as well as other toxins and heavy metals. Despite having just written a good amount about the impacts associated with the production of synthetic fibers, that’s actually not why I wanted to call attention to your yoga pants and dry-fit sweat-wicking T-shirts, which we wear out to dinner. It is hard for me to leave my fashion critique at the door, but what I actually want to say about synthetic fibers is that they are everywhere—not just in all of our clothes, but literally everywhere: rivers, lakes, oceans, agricultural fields, mountaintops, glaciers. Everywhere. Synthetic fibers, actually, may be one of the most abundant, widespread, and stubborn forms of pollution that we have inadvertently created.
Tatiana Schlossberg (Inconspicuous Consumption: The Environmental Impact You Don't Know You Have)
The real nemesis of the modern economy is ecological collapse. Both scientific progress and economic growth take place within a brittle biosphere, and as they gather steam, so the shock waves destabilise the ecology. In order to provide every person in the world with the same standard of living as affluent Americans, we would need a few more planets – but we only have this one. If progress and growth do end up destroying the ecosystem, the cost will be dear not merely to vampires, foxes and rabbits, but also to Sapiens. An ecological meltdown will cause economic ruin, political turmoil, a fall in human standards of living, and it might threaten the very existence of human civilisation. We could lessen the danger by slowing down the pace of progress and growth. If this year investors expect to get a 6 per cent return on their portfolios, in ten years they will be satisfied with a 3 per cent return, in twenty years only 1 per cent, and in thirty years the economy will stop growing and we’ll be happy with what we’ve already got. Yet the creed of growth firmly objects to such a heretical idea. Instead, it suggests we should run even faster. If our discoveries destabilise the ecosystem and threaten humanity, then we should discover something to protect ourselves. If the ozone layer dwindles and exposes us to skin cancer, we should invent better sunscreen and better cancer treatments, thereby also promoting the growth of new sunscreen factories and cancer centres. If all the new industries pollute the atmosphere and the oceans, causing global warming and mass extinctions, then we should build for ourselves virtual worlds and hi-tech sanctuaries that will provide us with all the good things in life even if the planet is as hot, dreary and polluted as hell.
Yuval Noah Harari (Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow)
The real improvements then must come, to a considerable extent, from the local communities themselves. We need local revision of our methods of land use and production. We need to study and work together to reduce scale, reduce overhead, reduce industrial dependencies; we need to market and process local products locally; we need to bring local economies into harmony with local ecosystems so that we can live and work with pleasure in the same places indefinitely; we need to substitute ourselves, our neighborhoods, our local resources, for expensive imported goods and services; we need to increase cooperation among all local economic entities: households, farms, factories, banks, consumers, and suppliers. If. we are serious about reducing government and the burdens of government, then we need to do so by returning economic self-determination to the people. And we must not do this by inviting destructive industries to provide "jobs" to the community; we must do it by fostering economic democracy. For example, as much as possible the food that is consumed locally ought to be locally produced on small farms, and then processed in small, non- polluting plants that are locally owned. We must do everything possible to provide to ordinary citizens the opportunity to own a small, usable share of the country. In that way, we will put local capital to work locally, not to exploit and destroy the land but to use it well. This is not work just for the privileged, the well-positioned, the wealthy, and the powerful. It is work for everybody. I acknowledge that to advocate such reforms is to advocate a kind of secession-not a secession of armed violence but a quiet secession by which people find the practical means and the strength of spirit to remove themselves from an economy that is exploiting and destroying their homeland. The great, greedy, indifferent national and international economy is killing rural America, just as it is killing America's cities--it is killing our country. Experience has shown that there is no use in appealing to this economy for mercy toward the earth or toward any human community. All true patriots must find ways of opposing it. --1991
Wendell Berry (Sex, Economy, Freedom, and Community: Eight Essays)
Little did you know that the metals in that lawnmower, came from a factory, that had polluted an entire township and killed 25 people leaving 400 others sick and dying, suffering from your purchase.
Lee Vickers (Bodies of Light)
So you’re an environmentalist; why are you killing a distant river with every bite? “Energy-intensive US factory farms generated 1.4 billion tons of animal waste in 1996, which ... pollutes American waterways more than all other industrial sources combined.
Anonymous
But just as a beautiful fish will occasionally sparkle in the waters of a polluted river that runs through a stretch of factories, so in the flow of old paper the spine of a rare book will occasionally shine forth, and if for a moment I turn away, dazzled, I always turn back in time to rescue it.
Bohumil Hrabal
Cheap relies on one other essential factor--a carefully constructed cover-up. In 1991, three golden-fried chicken fillets made at Imperial Food Products along with an order of fries cost $1.99 at Shoney's. This price, however, hid the real costs of the social system that allowed a company like Shoney's to charge so little for heaping plates of calorie-dense foods. Covered up were the costs incurred in farm subsidies and the piles of debt taken on by the chicken growers, some of whom had been turned into "modern-day serfs." The price didn't include the cost of food stamps for the underpaid, road building for transport, the cleanup of waterways polluted by animal factories, or the health care outlays needed in order to address the myriad issues linked to obesity and the litany of other ills associated with chronic overexposure to sugary, salty, and fatty foods. At the same time, the system of cheap never paid a dime for the wanton cruelty it imposed on animals or the injuries suffered by workers while killing ... and processing industrially produced chickens.
Bryant Simon (The Hamlet Fire: A Tragic Story of Cheap Food, Cheap Government, and Cheap Lives)
Despite all the immense achievements of the Chinese dynasties, the Muslim empires and the European kingdoms, even in ad 1850 the life of the average person was not better – and might actually have been worse – than the lives of archaic hunter-gatherers. In 1850 a Chinese peasant or a Manchester factory hand worked longer hours than their hunter-gatherer ancestors; their jobs were physically harder and mentally less fulfilling; their diet was less balanced; hygiene conditions were incomparably worse; and infectious diseases were far more common. Suppose you were given a choice between the following two vacation packages: Stone Age package: On day one we will hike for ten hours in a pristine forest, setting camp for the night in a clearing by a river. On day two we will canoe down the river for ten hours, camping on the shores of a small lake. On day three we will learn from the native people how to fish in the lake and how to find mushrooms in the nearby woods. Modern proletarian package: On day one we will work for ten hours in a polluted textile factory, passing the night in a cramped apartment block. On day two we will work for ten hours as cashiers in the local department store, going back to sleep in the same apartment block. On day three we will learn from the native people how to open a bank account and fill out mortgage forms. Which package would you choose?
Yuval Noah Harari (Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow)
Just as a factory pumping out pollutants degrades that air for everyone, so a TV blasting cable news into an airport lounge degrades the attentional capacities of everyone nearby.
Oliver Burkeman
As illusions go, this one is pretty stubborn. When you’re obsessed with efficiency and productivity, it’s difficult to see the real value of education and care. Which is why so many politicians and taxpayers alike see only costs. They don’t realize that the richer a country becomes the more it should be spending on teachers and doctors. Instead of regarding these increases as a blessing, they’re viewed as a disease. Yet unless we prefer to run our schools and hospitals as if they were factories, we can be certain that, in the race against the machine, the costs of healthcare and education will only go up. At the same time, products like refrigerators and cars have become too cheap. To look solely at the price of a product is to ignore a large share of the costs. In fact, a British think tank estimated that for every pound earned by advertising executives, they destroy an equivalent of £7 in the form of stress, overconsumption, pollution, and debt; conversely, each pound paid to a trash collector creates an equivalent of £12 in terms of health and sustainability.
Rutger Bregman (Utopia for Realists: And How We Can Get There)
Today, a Chinese factory hand leaves home around seven in the morning, makes her way through polluted streets to a sweatshop, and there operates the same machine, in the same way, day in, day out, for ten long and mind-numbing hours, returning home around seven in the evening in order to wash dishes and do the laundry. Thirty thousand years ago, a Chinese forager might leave camp with her companions at, say, eight in the morning. They’d roam the nearby forests and meadows, gathering mushrooms, digging up edible roots, catching frogs and occasionally running away from tigers. By early afternoon, they were back at the camp to make lunch. That left them plenty of time to gossip, tell stories, play with the children and just hang out. Of course the tigers sometimes caught them, or a snake bit them, but on the other hand they didn’t have to deal with automobile accidents and industrial pollution.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Suppose you were given a choice between the following two vacation packages: Stone Age package: On day one we will hike for ten hours in a pristine forest, setting camp for the night in a clearing by a river. On day two we will canoe down the river for ten hours, camping on the shores of a small lake. On day three we will learn from the native people how to fish in the lake and how to find mushrooms in the nearby woods. Modern proletarian package: On day one we will work for ten hours in a polluted textile factory, passing the night in a cramped apartment block. On day two we will work for ten hours as cashiers in the local department store, going back to sleep in the same apartment block. On day three we will learn from the native people how to open a bank account and fill out mortgage forms. Which package would you choose? (p.205)
Yuval Noah Harari (Homo Deus: A History of Tomorrow)
Designer labels are often made in Chinese factories in the same polluting conditions as cheaper products. To reiterate Dana Thomas: ‘Yes, luxury handbags are made in China.
Tansy E. Hoskins (Stitched Up: The Anti-Capitalist Book of Fashion)
In any situation where you can spot spillover effects (like a polluting factory), look for an externality (like bad health effects) lurking nearby. Fixing it will require intervention either by fiat (like government regulation) or by setting up a marketplace system according to the Coase theorem (like cap and trade).
Gabriel Weinberg (Super Thinking: The Big Book of Mental Models)
the spring contemporaries were noting that the Rhine was running clean for the first time in generations. There were no factories left in operation to pollute it.97
Anonymous
Many 18th- and 19th-century artists rejected, criticized, or ignored the Industrial Revolution. Instead of uplifting man, industry seemed to demoralize and dehumanize him. Men, women, and children were forced to work 14 hours a day, 6 days a week in urban factories, without benefits or vacations. Factories polluted the cities, alienated man from the soil, and seemed to benefit only those who owned them. This led many artists to turn to nature or the past or to a make-believe Golden Age when life was beautiful and just. It provoked others to try to reform society through their art.
Jesse Bryant Wilder (Art History For Dummies)
After World War II, the Italians made tremendous efforts to rebuild their country’s industry and economy. During the 1950s and ‘60s, with the aid of the European Recovery Program, the country encouraged new industries and improved its agriculture. Today, Italy’s industries are thriving, bringing work and wealth to the country. Nearly all families have homes, are well-fed, and own cars, televisions, and other consumer goods. Industrial success has brought problems, however. Building new factories, power stations, and roads has meant less land for housing, and millions of people live in crowded high-rise apartment houses. Industrial waste has caused pollution problems, especially in the rivers and along the coast. On the positive side, the gap between the rich, industrial north and the poorer, agricultural south is narrowing. The Southern Italy Development Fund has helped to make farming more efficient and established new industries, such as making electronic goods, in the south. Tourism has increased greatly, and more care is now being taken to preserve the country’s wildlife, natural landscapes, historical buildings, and works of art.
Marilyn Tolhurst (Italy (People & Places))
The forager economy provided most people with more interesting lives than agriculture or industry do. Today, a Chinese factory hand leaves home around seven in the morning, makes her way through polluted streets to a sweatshop, and there operates the same machine, in the same way, day in, day out, for ten long and mind-numbing hours, returning home around seven in the evening in order to wash dishes and do the laundry. Thirty thousand years ago, a Chinese forager might leave camp with her companions at, say, eight in the morning. They’d roam the nearby forests and meadows, gathering mushrooms, digging up edible roots, catching frogs and occasionally running away from tigers. By early afternoon, they were back at the camp to make lunch. That left them plenty of time to gossip, tell stories, play with the children and just hang out. Of course the tigers sometimes caught them, or a snake bit them, but on the other hand they didn’t have to deal with automobile accidents and industrial pollution.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Modern proletarian package: On day one we will work for ten hours in a polluted textile factory, passing the night in a cramped apartment block. On day two we will work for ten hours as cashiers in the local department store, going back to sleep in the same apartment block. On day three we will learn from the native people how to open a bank account and fill out mortgage forms.
Yuval Noah Harari (Homo Deus: A History of Tomorrow)
Even if you think you’re eating a super-healthy diet of grilled chicken breast, egg whites, “fresh” (but farm-raised) salmon, and nonfat Greek yogurt, your brain is being undermined by the invisible changes in your food supply. Just a few generations ago, almost all farms were family owned and operated. They’re now predominantly gigantic factory farms that pump their cows and chickens full of cheap feed that doesn’t just change the animals’ health—it changes yours as well. Environmental pollutants like mercury and BPAs can also affect the health of our brains, and fundamental changes in our lifestyle and environment play a vital role as well.
Mike Dow (The Brain Fog Fix: Reclaim Your Focus, Memory, and Joy in Just 3 Weeks)
The river twists and turns to face the city. It looms suddenly, massive, stamped on the landscape. Its light wells up around the surrounds, the rock hills, like bruise-blood. Its dirty towers glow. I am debased. I am compelled to worship this extraordinary presence that has silted into existence at the conjunction of two rivers. It is a vast pollutant, a stench, a klaxon sounding. Fat chimneys retch dirt into the sky even now in the deep night. It is not the current which pulls us but the city itself, its weight sucks us in. Faint shouts, here and there the calls of beasts, the obscene clash and pounding from the factories as huge machines rut. Railways trace urban anatomy like protruding veins. Red brick and dark walls, squat churches like troglodytic things, ragged awnings flickering, cobbled mazes in the old town, culs-de-sac, sewers riddling the earth like secular sepulchres, a new landscape of wasteground, crushed stone, libraries fat with forgotten volumes, old hospitals, towerblocks, ships and metal claws that lift cargoes from the water. How could we not see this approaching? What trick of topography is this, that lets the sprawling monster hide behind corners to leap out at the traveller? It is too late to flee.
China Miéville (Perdido Street Station (New Crobuzon, #1))
the impact of the rape, pillage and anarchy that marked the fifth century as the Goths, Alans, Vandals and Huns rampaged across Europe and North Africa is hard to exaggerate. Literacy levels plummeted; building in stone all but disappeared, a clear sign of collapse of wealth and ambition; long-distance trade that once took pottery from factories in Tunisia as far as Iona in Scotland collapsed, replaced by local markets dealing only with exchange of petty goods; and as measured from pollution in polar ice-caps in Greenland there was a major contraction in smelting work, with levels falling back to those of prehistoric times.
Peter Frankopan (The Silk Roads: A New History of the World)
Suppose you were given a choice between the following two vacation packages: Stone Age package: On day one we will hike for ten hours in a pristine forest, setting camp for the night in a clearing by a river. On day two we will canoe down the river for ten hours, camping on the shores of a small lake. On day three we will learn from the native people how to fish in the lake and how to find mushrooms in the nearby woods. Modern proletarian package: On day one we will work for ten hours in a polluted textile factory, passing the night in a cramped apartment block. On day two we will work for ten hours as cashiers in the local department store, going back to sleep in the same apartment block. On day three we will learn from the native people how to open a bank account and fill out mortgage forms.
Yuval Noah Harari (Homo Deus: A History of Tomorrow)
drop the economist’s beloved notion of ‘externalities’, those incidental effects felt by people who were not involved in the transactions that produced them—such as toxic effluent that affects communities living downstream of a river-polluting factory, or the exhaust fumes inhaled by cyclists biking through city traffic. Such negative externalities, remarks the ecological economist Herman Daly, are those things that ‘we classify as “external” costs for no better reason than because we have made no provision for them in our economic theories’.21 The systems dynamics expert John Sterman concurs. ‘There are no side effects—just effects,’ he says, pointing out that the very notion of side effects is just ‘a sign that the boundaries of our mental models are too narrow, our time horizons too short’.
Kate Raworth (Doughnut Economics: Seven Ways to Think Like a 21st-Century Economist)
Each new blast of statistics about how a tiny band of global oligarchs controls half the world’s wealth exposes the policies of privatization and deregulation for the thinly veiled license to steal that they always were. Each new report of factory fires in Bangladesh, soaring pollution in China, and water cut-offs in Detroit reminds us that free trade was exactly the race to the bottom that so many warned it would be. And each news story about an Italian or Greek pensioner who took his or her own life rather than try to survive under another round of austerity is a reminder of how many lives continue to be sacrificed for the few. The failure of deregulated capitalism to deliver on its promises is why, since 2009, public squares around the world have turned into rotating semipermanent encampments of the angry and dispossessed.
Naomi Klein (This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs. The Climate)
China uses about half of the world’s cement for its new roads and buildings. According to the World Bank in 2007, China had 16 of the world’s 20 most polluted cities. One day in January 2013, the air pollution index in Beijing was 755—measured on a scale of 0 to 500! In late 2012, 16,000 dead pigs were found floating in the river that supplies water to Shanghai, the PRC’s largest city. For 2010, a ministry of the Chinese government estimated the monetary cost of the environmental damage caused by rapid industrialization at $230 billion, which is 3.5 percent of China’s gross domestic product. Air pollution from Chinese factories wafts over to the Koreas and Japan. Sometimes, upper atmospheric winds carry the sulphur dioxide from China’s coal-burning clear over to North America’s west coast.
James Peoples (Humanity: An Introduction to Cultural Anthropology)
To look at people in capitalist society and conclude that human nature is egoism, is like looking at people in a factory where pollution is destroying their lungs and saying that it is human nature to cough
Andrew Collier (Marx: A Beginner's Guide)
If it’s hard to believe that death could take the voice of a siren to seduce men, it’s certainly true that men, whether they knew it or not, wanted to die. For years, for decades. Pollution: the polluters sullied themselves first and foremost: “I live in my factory yard, even though I have a house in town,” says one company owner. It was violence, first and foremost against themselves. A young man charged with armed robbery is asked whether it was necessary to shoot at the cashier. He replies, “I don’t know why I shot the cashier, I wanted to shoot myself.
Guido Morselli (Dissipatio H.G.: The Vanishing)