A recent report on global warming and climate change has touched on an issue that all can agree divides the world on how to tackle the pollution problem. The United States has one of the lowest ambient air pollution rankings in the industrialized world. The mean annual concentration of fine suspended particles less than 2.5 microns in diameter is a common measure of air pollution. The World Health Organization released its 2016 numbers in 2017. The United States (8%) and Canada (7%) are significantly lower than China (51%), Mexico (21%), Korea (25%), European Union (14%), Germany (12%), India (68%).
I don’t want to argue the merits of climate change and global warming because we can all agree that the world is getting warmer and colder but we can’t completely agree on the causes. Yes, greenhouse gases are a problem, yes CO2 Is a problem, yes, the earth’s rotation could be a cause, yes fossil fuels could be a factor but how much, can be debated ad nauseum.
What seems to never come up in the conversation is the hypocrisy of those who embrace cleaner air. What hypocrisy you ask? The hypocrisy of exporting our more pollution regulated manufacturing to countries, who do not regulate pollution to the extent that North America does. Our desire for cheaper priced goods has forced the American manufacturers to seek manufacturing from some of the biggest polluters on the planet, so we can stretch our dollar to buy more stuff. Materialism is the biggest cause of global warming and climate change.
The countries I have listed above are the United States biggest trading partners. They are also some of the world’s biggest polluters. Sure, our economy has benefited from the outsourcing of low wage jobs and yes it has aided in lowering our particulate pollutants but all we did is pass the pollution problem on to other countries. While bringing their countries into the industrial age, they have created an environmental mess in their own countries and around the globe.
So, the next time you buy that product made in China, Mexico, Korea or Japan, you are contributing more toward global warming then if you were to buy the same product made here in the United States.