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Capitalism and pollution: is there any way to combat this blight?

The capitalist world we live in is infecting everything it touches, and it’s rapidly throttling the life-force of the planet.

Smog covers the Hollywood sign in California, hanging over the streets like a noxious cloud. Breathing masks are worn in China and Japan to avoid respiratory difficulties, created because of pollution emanating from factories and cars. Crops in India are dying thanks to smoke billowing from power stations.

pollution

All these problems stem from free market capitalism, with its ethos of expansionism and unfettered profits. And without the appropriate controls in place, things are only set to get worse.

According to political and climate change activist Naomi Klein, the rise of capitalism (along with the evolution of wasteful technologies and mass production) has risen in line with the blight of climate change, and those at the top are unwilling to slow down the expansion of capital or place some restrictions on the free market.

The problems of TTIP

These problems are set to become worse with the implementation of the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), which is being brokered largely in secret by the US and EU, and reducing many of the regulatory barriers for large businesses, which are the companies most terrorizing the environment.

The TTIP is mainly about opening the boundaries in place for public services, including water supplies and toxic substances, allowing large American corporations to effectively ignore regulations designed to protect public health and the environment.

TTIP is viewed by campaigners as a pernicious attempt by big business to turn itself into a fully autonomous superpower, with governments essentially powerless against the selfish hand of CEOs and billionaires.

From global to personal

If you’re an average schmuck, the notion of trying to save the planet might feel like spitting in the wind when you’re faced with a tide of superpowers who shrug off the notion of climate change like it was a bad habit.

But building a sustainable future on your own terms can help save the environment in a number of ways, even if they are minor.

Using high-quality products in building work, for instance, like composite adhesive or sustainable materials, will improve the longevity of your home and, in turn, make it more eco-friendly.

And the effort you put into your home should also transfer to your business, where eco-friendly recycling programmes and sustainable materials should be used as often as possible to cut costs and create a positive effect on your local environment.

While TTIP is implemented (which seems likely) and the wheel of capitalism spins faster and faster, there are personal

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