Bright Green Lies: How the Environmental Movement Lost Its Way and What We Can Do About It

Derrick Jensen, Lierre Keith, and Max Wilbert. Monkfish, $24.95 trade paper (500p) ISBN 978-1-948626-39-2
In this substantial if dispiriting volume, environmental activists Jensen (Deep Green Resistance) and Keith (The Vegetarian Myth), and journalist Wilbert deliver a thorough critique of the environmental protection movement and its reliance on renewable resources. Even recycling, they write, “requires an infrastructure that is harmful to both the environment and humanity,” describing the vast amounts of energy required to recycle scrap metal and aluminum, and arguing that recycling is primarily a capitalist impulse: in 2015, for example, “the global recycling industry made more than $23 billion in profits.” Electronic waste, meanwhile, often gets sent to Ghana or Pakistan, “where the country’s poor pull apart or burn [items] to ‘recycle’ the metals, living day and night with the acrid smoke.” In addition to skewering the “false assumptions” of recycling, the authors call into question the efficacy of wind turbines (blades are manufactured from “energy-intensive plastics made from petrochemicals”), hydropower (dams impact “cultural sites and hunting, fishing, and gathering places”), and other renewable energy sources. While the survey is detailed and exhaustive, and the steady beat of doom and gloom is sobering, the lack of viable solutions to balance it is disappointing. Climate-minded readers may feel more overwhelmed than empowered. (Mar.)
Reviewed on : 02/01/2021
Release date: 03/01/2021
Genre: Nonfiction
Book - 978-1-948626-40-8
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