Thursday, May 30, 2013

False Choices - Ecology vs. Economy

Yesterday, Exxon Mobil's CEO, Rex Tillerson made a statement that has to make any thinking person scratch their head.  A group of shareholders presented a proposal that the company adopt a plan to reduce its carbon emissions.  As part of the discussion Tillerson said, "What good is it to save the planet if humanity suffers?"

Is he actually saying that we can trash the planet without humanity suffering?  Or is he saying that short term profits are worth more than the long term health of the planet?  Is he denying that climate change is real and that it is caused by human activity (in opposition to over 97% of climate scientists)? 

Whatever he is implying... he's wrong.  We are not making a false choice between human suffering and the health of the planet.  They go hand in hand.  If one suffers, both suffer.  If one is redeemed, both are redeemed.  Now it may be that working for the health of the planet will require hard work, changed priorities, and new technologies.  Difficult perhaps, but in the long run good for humanity.

By the way, the shareholders rejected the proposal by nearly 3 to 1.

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