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The environmental implications of Christmas

December 25th, 2019

Both a left-wing and a conservative commentator find Western consumption patterns unsustainable. They also find broadly hyped market-friendly suggestions unlikely to stop global warming.

Népszava’s Róbert Friss commenting on the end of year shopping fever fears that in the absence of systemic changes in production and consumption, Western civilization will collapse. The left-wing commentator believes that rising welfare levels cannot be maintained due to the absence of natural resources, and climate change. Friss speculates that capitalism will adjust to green ideology, and by co-opting environmentalist slogans, it will hijack the green movement by rechanneling consumption to products labeled as environmentally friendly. He doubts, however, if either centralizing economic planning or returning to a pre-industrial age would help us prevent climate degradation.

In Magyar Hírlap, Katalin Kondor also lambasts suggestions that climate change can be stopped through green consumption. The conservative commentator asserts that eco-friendly and recycled products are very expensive and therefore hardly affordable for most people. Moreover, the purchase of such allegedly green products will have very little impact, if any, on global warming, she laments.

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