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Treading lightly

Betsan Powys | 13:57 UK time, Thursday, 11 October 2007

I've left but a light carbon footprint on the world today - walking over first thing to the Wales Millennium Centre to chair a WWF Cymru debate on their concept of a One Planet Wales, in other words a Wales that uses no more than its fair share of the world's resources. I got up so early I didn't even boil a kettle, so there.

But proof positive this morning that our one world isn't just wasteful; it's also potty.

The Ministry of Defence has a reward system for companies who work efficiently and sustainably. Government systems like that have a tendency to be ever so slightly unbending. Once they're in place, you stick to them. So they lately awarded a prize for low carbon impact to a company with a contract to make anti-aircraft missiles.

Well done. The world must be a better place for having companies in it that kill people sustainably.

Better go and boil a kettle I think.

Comments   Post your comment

  • 1.
  • At 03:11 PM on 11 Oct 2007,
  • Rhydian James wrote:

The government changed the baseline by £200 million giving Wales a 1.8% increase. Labour have raised taxes as a percentage of GDP since 2000, and raised public spending, and thus borrowing, at a faster rate. The result is that the UK is runnig a huge public sector debt. This seems the perfect time to spend even more borrowed money on killing in a low-carbon way.

How on earth could we live with killing thousands of people plus a carbon footprint? Unthinkable!

  • 2.
  • At 03:43 PM on 11 Oct 2007,
  • Martin wrote:

Don't you see the irony in that prize, with aircraft being a major cause of pollution surely taking a few of them out of the sky deserves some 'brownie points', or rather 'greenie points'.

  • 3.
  • At 04:02 PM on 11 Oct 2007,
  • Richard Harris wrote:

"British arms manufacturer BAE Systems is designing "environmentally friendly" weapons, including "reduced lead" bullets, "reduced smoke" grenades and rockets with fewer toxins...

Other initiatives include developing armoured vehicles with lower carbon emissions, safer and more sustainable artillery and even recycling or composting waste explosives...

"Weapons are going to be used and when they are, we try to make them as safe for the user [sic] as possible, to limit the collateral damage and to impact as little as possible on the environment," Debbie Allen, BAE Systems' director of corporate social responsibility." Sunday Times - September 2006.

Laugh or cry? No doubt "Gordon" will introduce another "winning" tax break...

  • 4.
  • At 04:09 PM on 11 Oct 2007,
  • Nigel Hollett wrote:


well chaired session this morning, I really enjoyed it and one of the better events I've attended recently.

Lots of things stood out from the presentations and comments, but one thing in particular is about how difficult it can be to be more sustainable. The wider public aren't necessarily that committed, or not, to being more environmentally friendly, so it's up to all those organisations involved to make things much more easy for people to do their bit

One planet living is a great way of thinking about sustainable development as this in itself is simple and understandable for the general public. Well done WWF et al!



  • 5.
  • At 06:48 PM on 11 Oct 2007,
  • Guto wrote:

Well if they shoot down all those aircrafts which pollute the earth, surely that does a lot to reduce our carbon output!

  • 6.
  • At 08:20 PM on 11 Oct 2007,
  • neal wrote:

Given the carbon footprint of air travel, any company making anti-aircraft guns surely deserves the prize?

Ho ho...

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