Wednesday, May 16, 2012

One Word ... "Fungi"

Most people of a certain age remember the movie, "The Graduate" starring a young Dustin Hoffman. As a famous line from that movie suggests, it was back in the day when plastics were all the rage.

Now there's a fascinating report that students from Yale University have found fungi that can exist entirely by "eating" polyurethane, as long as conditions are anaerobic. I suppose it's even better news that most landfills (like true wetlands) are anaerobic, so the newly discovered fungi could be used to degrade polyurethane in landfills.

Some people, in fact, think fungi can save the world. I think that sort of message points to a sharp divide within the community of environmentalism.  Some seek innovation and the application of authentic science as answers to real world ecological problems. By contrast, other "environmentalists" relentlessly pursue contraction and restrictions as the only solutions for imagined problems, while continually asking for more grants and donations to fund self-promotional "scientific studies." One type of environmentalist applies science as a solution. The other uses "science" to beat up people and put a halt to everyday activities. One finds answers. The other finds problems ... everywhere ... all the time.

There is the old joke that a Puritan is someone with the desperate fear that somebody, somewhere is having fun. The same could be said for certain types of environmentalists (and planners) who have the desperate fear that somebody, somewhere might actually be enjoying their property, or interacting with nature.

Judging by the way our CAO and SMP process is going, I think we can tell what brand of environmentalism holds sway over our County.

1 comment:

  1. Uh, better living through organic chemistry?