That was the question I received in an e-mail from an organization I support, the Nature Conservancy. The e-mail included the following:
Check out our new Everyday Environmentalist tips from Nature Conservancy staff on how to make personal, science-based choices (my emphasis added) to help save the planet – from raising your own chickens to running your car on vegetable oil. Then tell us how you’re going green! Read Our Eco-Tips – and Send Us Yours!
Since they were looking for science, I logged in and contributed the following: “Produce as much wealth as one’s abilities and motivation allow them to do. A little bit richer is a LOT cleaner, safer and healthier.” Here is a summary of some scientific studies. I’d remind people that the greatest environmental threats to the health and safety of humans, particularly airborne and water-borne diseases and bugs, have been all but eradicated – in large part due to the massive increase in wealth afforded by industrialization, technology, the rule of law and property rights protections. Perhaps no greater evidence of “Green” is to look at life expectancy at birth. I challenge folks to look at that data and conclude that things are getting worse.