We all love a quick-fix, don’t we? Like reversing some ecological disaster by injecting the clouds with some kind of particulate matter. Yeah, that would be awesome.
Well, good news! You can keep consuming like a professional shopper and with any one (or several) of these options you can rest easy knowing your world won’t dissolve into a watery abyss—assuming we make it that far.
Go ahead: blame someone else
Sure, the environmental problems that have finally gotten too overwhelming to ignore are largely the result of human consumption over the past 50 years, but who’s keeping track? After all, we wouldn’t be in this mess if manufacturers weren’t so good at convincing us to buy their products. I mean, we can’t help that we NEED a phone with face ID and retinal displays now that they exist—how did we ever make it without?
And trash collectors really ought to be more selective in what they take from our curbs. It’s not your fault that old phone went in the wrong bin—it’s hard to make a bank-shot from the sofa. If only those garbage collectors would sift your bin, then they’d see all the things that could be sent on to a recycler for them to deal with.
It’s okay because science is here!
Thankfully, with new breakthroughs in science, you can go back to spending your hard-earned money on things you’ll throw away just after using them. Bottled water? No problem, we have bacteria that will eat up all the bottles that don’t make it to the ocean—so drink and toss without worry! Conflict minerals? Don’t let those innocent lives stop you from purchasing a new laptop every two years; we have Daisy and Liam to reclaim at least a percentage of minerals from the fraction of iPhones Apple has sold.
Carbon woes, no more! With science, we can sequester your carbon better than any old, ugly tree ever could. It’s only going to take a few hundred floating filters and perhaps some sulfuric-acid aerosols. Nothing you need worry about, anyway, since you have a house to cool to 62° in the heat of the day.
Think this is short-sighted? Well, I ask you: what is a resource? It’s a source to re-alize into something you need or want or that might potentially distract you from things like the dying coral reefs. So, spend away and let science salt the oceans with iron to counteract our consumption. In fact, instead of circular economics, we can use circular science; spending precious resources to find a cure for the lack of resources we’re creating.
Time is an illusion anyway
It’s okay to continue with our current consumption rate because science has almost solved the puzzle. Fusion energy is just a few (more) years away and Space X is finishing up their initial plans to colonize an uninhabitable planet, once we’ve spent this one up. Experts estimate that (hopefully) in Musk’s lifetime, we’ll see a baby born on the red planet—and Elon is, like, almost fifty!
With all these solutions, and a population explosion bordering on infestation, we need to keep up our consumption as an example of human authority over nature to the younger generations. They need to see that this planet is ours for the taking, and no amount of consequence should deter us from the killer discounts we could receive on Black Friday—especially since we’ve got Earth Day to balance it all out. I mean, I dropped off an old VHS player this year, what about you?
Or, you could take …responsibility
If you’re not interested in allowing science to solve our problems, then there’s really only one thing left to do. You’re not going to like it, because it’s not science, but you’ll have to curb your consumption habits.
I know what you’re saying, “but that’s just too hard—why can’t I just take a pill or something, instead?” and you’re right. There is so little we have to be accountable for in this day and age, it’s insulting to have to take responsibility for our own actions.
And, while waiting for a scientific breakthrough to make everything Soylent, it only makes sense to send our waste overseas to make room for another apartment complex or strip mall. It’ll only take a few thousand years to get us back to good. Besides, what would “environmentally-responsible behavior” do for us, anyway?
Okay, so taking responsibility for our actions, reusing our resources, and conserving what we do have might just help to make this world a little better. And, yes, sustainability is living within your means so the next generation doesn’t go without—which would be good for your grandchildren. Which, of course, means this planet will have a fighting chance to continue being our home.
But, is it really better to reuse that old laptop—knowing you’re not taking part in destroying someone’s homeland—than it is to just scrap it and buy the newest one? Ironically, we’re each left to decide that on our own.