Monday, July 23, 2007

The cost of progress.

All of us would love if the world is like the Garden of Eden in its pristine and unspoiled environment. Of course nobody ever known how it is like to be in the Garden of Eden but we tend to imagine it to be the best environment the world has ever seen. Indeed it should be because it was just newly created by God before sin was committed by man. Since then the world continue to change. If you would ask me whether I would want to go back and live in the ancient times, my answer would definitely be NO. The main reason is that I am used to the environment and progress that is happening in this century.

There is my car that I can use to travel far. There is the air-conditioner in my room that I can switch on when the weather is too hot. There is the telephone that I can use to call my friends or family members whenever I want to. Definitely I would not have all these in the late 19th century. All this is because man have made tremendous progress in science and invention.

I read with much interest the article ran by Chicago Tribune about a BP Factory in Whiting, Indiana. Well, I did not live in Whiting nor have I been there but the news would have far reaching impact on the Americans and the world generally. The article mentioned about BP Factory discharging sludge into Lake Michigan thus will endanger the lives of not just the birds and aquatic life but also the people staying there. If this is true then it would indeed a tremendous wrong done by BP. BP Factory respond that the facts in the article are misrepresented and have issued their own facts about the matter.

Here are some of the facts mentioned by BP in their response to the article: -

Only treated water into Lake Michigan. What is released from our refinery is treated water that is more than 99.9% water — not sludge. All sludge is treated separately, according to state and federal requirements, and never discharged into Lake Michigan.

Well within legal limits A new water discharge permit allows the refinery’s average ammonia discharge to increase, but at levels that will still be less than half of those that federal environmental guidelines could allow.

No harm to people or the environment. We follow state and federal laws, regulations, and guidelines that protect aquatic and human life.

We certainly need the fuel generated by BP or any of the oil companies. And in order for them to produce the gas we need to live our lives as comfortable as we want it to be, they would need to expand their operation. Of course with the expansion there would be more waste produced but it is a necessary “waste”. If it is done within the limits govern by the law, then it should not be an issue at all. I just wonder whether human should stop having more children because of the shit and “waste” that children would produce. Definitely NO. We just need to learn to control and manage such waste.

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