Canadian journalist Donna Laframboise. Former National Post & Toronto Star columnist, past vice president of the Canadian Civil Liberties Association. New posts: Mondays & Wednesdays.
Everyone’s standard of living drops as daily necessities become more costly.
The Issue With Tissue: How Americans are Flushing Forests Down the Toilet is a real report. It was released last week by the Natural Resources Defence Council (NRDC).
Described as one of America’s “most powerful environmental groups,” this outfit is a band of lawyers and lobbyists. Rather than doing something useful with their lives, they spend their time harassing businesses who employ people in small logging towns, including many First Nations/native Indian/indigenous breadwinners.
The NRDC are parasites – over-educated, self-satisfied intellectuals who imagine they’re qualified to tell those on the ground how things should be done. In the name of battling climate change, of course.
The new TP report is part of a decades-long war against the forestry industry. Please note: one of the reasons affordable housing is scarce is that lumber costs more than it should. Lumber prices are high partly because of this non-stop activist campaign.
Nothing is ever good enough for these parasite lawyers. Even when forestry companies bend over backward to satisfy their demands, the goalposts keep shifting.
This report declares that “FSC and FSC-Mix certification are not enough” (p. 18). Over at the FSC website, we read that:
FSC certification ensures that products come from responsibly managed forests…
But the parasite lawyers deem this insufficient. Why? Because, these protocols don’t
alleviate the significant demand for virgin fiber. Only transitioning away from forest content by incorporating postconsumer recycled materials and alternate fibers will stop the needless and unsustainable use of trees for throwaway tissue products. [bold added, p. 18]
Honestly, one doesn’t know whether to laugh or cry. First of all, trees grow on trees. They’re another kind of crop. Humans grow them, harvest them, then grow more of them.
If the harvesting of this crop takes place in “responsibly managed forests,” there’s nothing unsustainable about it.
The NRDC’s use of those other morally-charged terms – needless and throwaway – is no accident. These people are pushing an extremist agenda that looks a lot like religious fanaticism. They consider it sinful for humans to feed their families by cutting down trees so that useful products can be made from them.
Moreover, greens are desperate to save household recycling programs that are finally attracting serious scrutiny because they make no economic sense. The market for post consumer, recycled material has always been precarious. Our fantasy that household waste can be collected curbside and then repurposed doesn’t actually work in the real world.
As I’ve discussed elsewhere, it costs money to collect, sort, bleach, and sanitize material from residential recycling programs. Those activities use massive amounts of fossil-fueled energy. They use massive amounts of water.
Less efficient, more expensive procedures are a surefire way to go out of business. When the cost of recycling exceeds the cost of new/virgin material, manufacturers do the sensible thing.
Furthermore, it turns out that consumers – you and me – prefer pristine looking toilet paper to ugly, unbleached, 100% recycled stuff. It turns out few of us are prepared to pay extra for TP that has a higher ratio of recycled content. While TP manufacturers are criticized in this report, we are the real problem since we’re the source of that “demand for virgin fiber.”
Fanatics are fanatics because they impose their worldview on everyone else, rather than permitting fellow citizens to make their own decisions.
Green activists employ a variety of levers to get their own way. Lobbying. Lawsuits. Writing reports that malign companies that refuse to comply.
The goal is to coerce manufacturers into making toilet paper with higher and higher percentages of recycled paper (usually via government-imposed mandates). The goal is to force you and me to pay more.
Of course, it won’t end there. Every conceivable consumer product can be targeted in a similar manner. The cumulative result is that everyone’s standard of living drops as daily essentials become more costly.
There’s no pity in a parasite lawyer’s heart for young families struggling to make ends meet. There’s no compassion for elderly, fixed-income pensioners attempting to live out their final years with some semblance of dignity.