[ExI] Unsustainable was Re: Solar power makes UK people poorer

Rafal Smigrodzki rafal.smigrodzki at gmail.com
Sat Jun 11 02:37:16 UTC 2011

On Fri, Jun 10, 2011 at 10:13 PM, Will Steinberg
<steinberg.will at gmail.com> wrote:
> Your information is incorrect for your argument purposes.  For example,
> sustainability does not mean here running out of phosphorus, it is runoff
> causing massive algal blooms eutrophying the shit out of lakes and ruining
> the ecosystem, a thing that you might remember is important to us...

### This is not what sustainability is about, except in the most
trivial meaning. Eutrophication is a present day harm to specific
persons. Sustainability pertains to being able to continue a behavior
indefinitely. By this token, eutrophication is actually sustainable -
you could go on harming bathers and anglers with green slime forever,
and there is no clear accumulation of harm that would force you to
stop - until you run out of phosphate to put in waters.

I guess we are splitting hairs here. What matters to me is that
harming innocent people is bad, and the notion of sustainability is at
best useless, and at worst harmful since it may divert resources from
benefitting existing humans to mitigation of theoretical problems
affecting hypothetical descendants.


More information about the extropy-chat mailing list