The Ignorance Behind Environmental Assumptions

In class last week we talked about the idea of environmental assumptions. I thought this was quite an interesting topic because there are so many excuses that people use as a way to make themselves feel better for their apathy towards the environment.

One saying that I found to be particularly interesting was, “the environment has to be balanced against the economy.” This is essentially stating that by not addressing environmental concerns, we are able to save more money. Many people who believe in this environmental assumption view the concerns of the environment as “luxuries” that are a waste of money, since they believe the environmental issues can be fixed on their own with time, and without any extra costs. This of course is completely false because the problems with the environment are not just short-term issues that will work themselves out, they are long-term issues that will only keep getting worse if we keep ignoring them.

Another saying that we talked about which I found to be exceptionally interesting as well was, “technology will save our problems.” People who believe in this environmental assumption think that technology only serves to solve problems that are already intact in the environment, and they do not take into account that excessive technology use is causing its own problems in the environment and may continue to create new problems in the future. All current environmental issues are a direct result of prior technological advices, so advancing more could essentially cause even more environmental issues. In class, we also talked about how technological solutions to environmental issues are usually much more expensive and harder to implement than preventative measures, which are proven to be the best, most efficient way to solve problems in the environment.

These assumptions are believed by many people across the globe. Attached below is a picture which I feel accurately represents the assumption that, “the environment has to be balanced against the economy.” In the picture, you can clearly see that the economy weighs much more than the environment. Something must be done in order to end these false environmental assumptions. People need to start realizing that the environment is the catalyst for many other aspects of life on Earth. If we keep ignoring the environment, what will happen to us?



11 thoughts on “The Ignorance Behind Environmental Assumptions”

  1. I have many of the same concern and wonder; at what point will it come to an end? I think many world leaders fail to recognize the dependence that the economy has on the environment and how the economic system will collapse along with the environment.

  2. The problem I see with the statement “technology will save all our problems” is that I believe we have the technology readily available, it is just a matter of implementing them nationwide. Our government, policies and regulations are the things stopping us from using technology to save us.

  3. These assumptions are all so dangerous. But unfortunately, they are what the general public believe. And our leaders seem to reinforce these beliefs in order to prevent panic or uprising. Now that the truth behind these assumptions has been brought to light for those of us in this class, I feel like it is our responsibility to help educate others- difficult a task as that may be.

  4. i like this post a lot because it ties a new topic of one-liners back in with an old topic of externalities. this class has really taken us full circle and that is clear in this post. without including the externalities we are choosing to ignore the fact the goods the earth provides are the only reason we have an economy in the first place. if more people saw it that way i think we would have a changed outlook on the economic system.

  5. I also thought this topic was quite interesting. I think a great way to end this lack of knowledge about the environment is to have everybody take an environmental course in high school. I think it would greatly benefit the cause if everyone were educated about these problems in school.

  6. I feel like this is always the problem! People assume too many things and they think that the earth will be okay or that some other person will find a way to change the world and save it. I think anytime that it comes to money, people will always be skeptical since there is always a lack of knowledge. I think everyone needs to be educated on the environment and how everything connects.

  7. I don’t understand how anyone could consider the environment to be a “luxury” expense. How could anyone think it is a luxury to have clean air to breathe and clean water to drink? We need the environment to be healthy no matter what, and it is WAY cheeper to clean it now than it would be to clean it if it becomes way worse in the future.

  8. Taking this class, I’ve realized that there are ten solutions for almost every environmental problem we face. The technology is here, yes it will be improved. I’m not holding out for nuclear fusion because nuclear fission is already attainable, which brings along it’s own externalities. The way technology works is we continually upgrade, not jump 30 years progress when it seems right.

  9. i totally agree with you on this. people always seem to have the mindset that technology will save us and i didn’t cause thisso its not my problem to worry about. if we as a society can just lose those mindsets, then we can all move forward and towards a more sustainable future.

  10. I think there will always be a rationalization for human nature. I think it comes with a territory, but in terms of the environment it can be hard to contend against people who will always externalize their own negative contributions.

  11. I agree with you. People always have the mindset that technology fixes everything and that if they aren’t directly causing something then it is not there problem. Because of this we make our problems worse, but if as a society we learned to change this mindset we could potentially move towards a sustainable future.

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