Michael Crichton calls for the abandonment of “the religion of environmentalism” in these remarks to the Commonwealth Club of San Francisco. Crichton notes that environmentalism has become “one of the most powerful relgions in the Western World,” and “seems to be the religion of choice for urban atheists.” This means that “facts aren’t necessary because the tenets of envirnomentalism are all about belief.” He then cites examples of the false tenets of environmentalism: that DDT is a carcinogen that causes birds to die; that second hand smoke is a health hazard; that the evidence of global warming is strong; that the size of the Sahara desert is increasing; that the total ice of Antarctica is decreasing. Some of these myths have been deadly, says Chrichton. For example, the ban on DDT has “caused the deaths of tens of millions of poor people, mostly children.” And our fifty-year effort at forest fire suppression, “is a well-intentioned disaster from which our forests will never recover.”
Crichton calls for a return to the science of environmentalism, with public policy judgments to be based fairly upon that science. As a start, he suggests that the Environment Protection Agency be shut down and replaced with a new organization, much closer in nature to the FDA, that will be ruthless about acquiring verifiable results and that will promote honesty, not dishonesty, in the field.
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