American Elephants


Environmentalists: loving Nature to death by The Elephant's Child

Baby Orangutan and Baby Tiger Rescued in Indonesia

Al Gore has managed to scare the bureaucrats with his global warming hysteria. Ordinary people are a bit more dubious — with good reason. Legislators, city councilmen, members of congress are rushing to be seen as leaders in the fight to stop global warming. Aside from changing their light bulbs, recycling, and perhaps buying a Prius (just wait til they find out how much those new batteries cost) what can an individual do?

If you are a bureaucrat, and there’s a good fad handy, you regulate it.

According to the European Union’s climate change goals, two percent of all diesel must be vegetable oil, rising to 5.7% in 2010 and 10 percent by 2020. This makes the demand for palm oil, which is used in bio-diesel, guaranteed to increase.

This demand is met to a great extent by clear-cutting rain forests in Indonesia, to make way for palm oil plantations. As the rainforests disappear, the great apes — the orangutan — starve. They are hunted, burnt, and mutilated by workers trying to protect their crops. A charity, Borneo Orangutan Survival, now has more than 600 mostly orphaned orangutan babies. The center director estimates that they are rescuing only one-fifth of the apes. (Remember, conversely, the reason for not drilling in ANWR is supposedly to avoid annoying the caribou.)

In Europe, due to poor planning, there seems to be a shortage in the years’ grain crop. Last years’ was sold off, and land that was expected to be available has been turned over to production of bio-diesel and other industrial uses. Prices are soaring.

The fact is that there is not enough farmland in cultivation to fill both the world’s stomachs and the world’s gas tanks. There are dreams and there are pipe-dreams. It’s not always easy to tell the difference.

The EU has announced a tax of more than $70 for each return trip airfare, a tax on jet fuel for flights within the EU — doubling the cost of many budget airline flights in the belief that aviation is the fastest growing source for “greenhouse gasses.”

Naturally, all this is happening just as the case for man-made global warming is beginning to crumble. Can we regain a little common sense before environmentalists have destroyed too much woodland and wildlife?




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