Peelyethylene

“Prepacked orange segments … last about four days whereas a whole orange can last months. Compare the environmental lifetime of orange peel (months) and polyethylene (effectively eternity) – all for the convenience of not peeling an orange.” http://theconversation.com/plastic-packaging-is-often-pollution-for-profit-95015

But with the ‘prepared’ orange, you get the bonus chance of discovering some overworked, underpaid, abused, injured, migrant worker’s blue plaster.

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Aqua Vitae

“If trends persist, the amount of pharmaceutical effluence leaching into waterways could increase by two-thirds before 2050 … A large number of drugs – analgesics, antibiotics, anti-platelet agents, hormones, psychiatric drugs, antihistamines – have been found at levels dangerous for wildlife.” https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/apr/11/drug-waste-clogs-rivers-around-the-world-scientists-say

If we can just pump enough medication into our drinking water, the human population will become completely healthy.

British Psycholeum

“BP’s claim that “in most instances, the increased activity associated with cleanup operations will be a welcome boost to local economies”.
BP also claimed it had not identified any social impacts arising from the event of a diesel spill and “since there are no unresolved stakeholder concerns … BP interprets this event to be socially acceptable”.” https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/bp-claims-an-oil-spill-off-australia-s-coast-would-be-a-welcome-boost-to-local-economies-20180406-p4z867.html

The moral justification for polluting: keeping someone in a job.

Insect Asides

“The European Food Safety Authority (Efsa) assessment [of neonicotinoid pesticides] includes bumblebees and solitary bees for the first time.” https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/feb/28/total-ban-on-bee-harming-pesticides-likely-after-major-new-eu-analysis

Solitary bees were previously reluctant to take part.

“A spokesman for Syngenta, a neonicotinoid manufacturer, said: “Efsa sadly continues to rely on a [bee risk guidance] document that is overly conservative, extremely impractical and would lead to a ban of most if not all insecticides, including organic products.””

If organic produce is now classified as an insecticide, then chemical pesticides are no more effective than hurling rotten fruit at insects.

Plawstic

“Marine plastic litter can already be controlled through the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS); the London Convention; the MARPOL Convention; the Basel Convention; Customary Law, and many other regional agreements.
Article 194 of UNCLOS, for instance, requires states to ‘prevent, reduce and control pollution of the marine environment from any source.
Measures shall include, inter alia, those designed to minimize to the fullest possible extent… the release of toxic, harmful or noxious substances, especially those which are persistent, from land-based sources… [and] shall include those necessary to protect and preserve rare or fragile ecosystems as well as the habitat of depleted, threatened or endangered species and other forms of marine life.'” http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-43115486

If only the legal profession was as persistent.

Closing the Net

“Pollution in the womb is now linked to low birth weight, disruption of the baby’s lung and brain development, and a series of debilitating and fatal diseases in later life. …
Three times as many deaths are caused by pollution as by Aids, malaria and tuberculosis combined.” https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/jan/24/end-civilisation-take-different-path

Fortunately pollution does not yet directly affect political decision-makers.

Monkeyswagen

“An unusual experiment: Ten monkeys squatted in airtight chambers, watching cartoons for entertainment as they inhaled fumes from a diesel Volkswagen Beetle.” https://www.nytimes.com/2018/01/25/world/europe/volkswagen-diesel-emissions-monkeys.html

Whatever about test rigging—again—we might pay attention if car manufacturing executives had diesel fumes pumped into their offices.