## Thursday, September 06, 2007

### Eco-slavery

Brendan O'Neill, the editor of Spiked, analyzes eco-enslavement in
Is carbon offsetting just eco-enslavement?
The article describes stunning ways how the dollars from carbon indulgences - paid by Prince Charles, David Cameron, Climate Care, and many others - are used in poor countries.

For example, in India, the money is used to provide "treadle pumps" - a gadget you may know from the gyms (video) - to rural families for them to get water without using diesel fuels. In British prisons, these gadgets were abolished a century ago. But they are good enough for the new Indian slaves whose task is no longer to provide rich Westerners with useful labor but to clear their conscience from "eco-guilt". Several other shocking examples are listed. Did you know what is a "biogas digester"? Indian kids are collecting cowpats and throw them, together with water, into a machine. Yummy.

Do you feel guilty about your two-week break in Barbados, when you flew thousands of miles and lived up with cocktails on sunlit beaches? Well, offset it by sponsoring eco-friendly child labor in the third world!

O'Neill mentions that some people call the retailers of these extreme techniques "climate cowboys" but it is a misnomer because these methods are no exceptional excesses: they are a realization of the very essence of mainstream environmentalism, namely contempt for human dignity and technological progress.

Thanks to Brian O'Connor.