When it comes to saving trees or wildlife I am a dedicated conservationist. I believe every living creature has a right to live and we have no justification to impinge upon that right. However, when it comes to stuff like hybrid cars or solar power I prefer to dissociate from it all.

Call me a cynic, but over the last few years I have come to the conclusion that 'going green' is as much of a propaganda as the supposed swine flu epidemic was. Swine flu killed what? 100 people may be? More die of Malaria each day in this country. Some drug company developed a vaccine for the H1N1 virus and thought of a way to recover its R&D costs. It is what anti-virus companies do when they clandestinely release viruses on the internet.

Nobel Prize winner IPCC said Himalayan glaciers will disappear by 2035. We all know what happened to that finding. Make no mistake, alternative energy is going to be a big industry. There are the interests of many players involved in creating a panic among the population to create pressure groups.

That said, I am not saying there is no need to conserve for the future. But there is a line of rationality that must not be crossed. We have to decide for ourselves which choice is sensible and which is simply hogwash. For example, popular conception dictates that solar energy is non-polluting. Large-scale solar power production requires vast areas of land to set up solar panels. I would say that contributes to pollution. Even if that land is a desert, any human interference with nature will have a future cost associated with it.

We have to decide whether the non-conventional energy we adopt is in any substantial way better than our fossil fuels. Iceland did it brilliantly. They have geothermal resources and they use it well. Chicago is setting up windmills on building tops. Fabulous. But I am not sure hybrid cars are anything more than a gimmick. The hidden costs inherent in any hybrid car far outweigh any potential benefits.

Similarly, Earth Hour was nothing more than a gimmick. I am surprised that barring a few none could even contemplate the damaging impact it could have on the national grid. Imagine the repercussions of it if everyone had indeed switched off lights and the grid had collapsed. It would have given such bad press to conservation efforts that all future endeavours would be scoffed at. Is that really what we want in the name of conservation?

Current Mood: Gloomy
Current Music: Bombay Talkies - Hum Jab Honge Saath Saath