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Eco-Tourism question

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  • alec kitson
    It is interesting to see the back-and-forth about real estate in CR receiving a thorough airing and being permitted to continue. I, for one, find this
    Message 1 of 26 , Apr 29, 2007
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      It is interesting to see the back-and-forth about real estate in CR receiving a thorough airing and being permitted to continue. I, for one, find this refreshing and hope the topic will play out until everyone who wants to has had their say, shared their experiences. I expect more than a few readers have had their eyebrows raised by some of the postings/ revelations and for those who haven't yet experienced the world of CR real estate, it's not a bad primer. Like most who have kicked around CR for a while, I have my share of both first-hand experiences and second-hand anecdotes about real estate skulduggery and so on and know first hand that 'talk directly to the owner' is sage advice, even when realtors are involved. In this, as in many aspects of life, quite often the louder people trumpet their own claims of 'integrity' and so on perhaps the more skeptical one should be. One recalls that quotation from Ralph Waldo Emerson, "The louder he talked of his honor, the faster we counted our spoons"...

      -----------------------------------

      CRL apparently inclines to let serious discourse play out these days, so here's a question about 'eco-tourism'.

      Let me preface this only for clarity by saying I happen not to buy into what for simplicity could be called Gore-ism. I don't believe man-made CO2 emissions are contributory in any significant way to 'global warming'; indeed I don't think anything more than normal climate oscillations are happening. I do think that man-made emissions are a factor in air quality and we should vigorously continue reducing such harmful emissions - but they're two different and scarcely related issues.

      OK, that was the disclaimer only meant to illustrate that I have no CO2 or eco axe to grind not to start a debate. It makes the following puzzlement rather academic in my own case, but nonetheless hopefully of wider interest.

      How do those involved in the 'eco tourism' industry reconcile the term 'eco' with people's being encouraged to fly to and tour or hang out at 'eco' places in Costa Rica, incurring the related carbon and other emissions that are so exciting the, er, excitable at the moment? I've often thought those who could make a better claim on eco-friendliness, or at least CO2 friendliness if they thought about such things, are those who hang out in their own localities and maybe vacation either at home or at a nearby lake or something. Pretty much what mankind has largely done throughout it's history except for the last few generations.

      Now that 'eco-friendly' seems to have become the latest craze in marketing, presumably until people get bored and move on the Next Great Thing, I for one am a bit puzzled by the seemingly oxymoronic quality of the phrase 'eco-tourism'. Or 'eco' second homes thousands of miles from where you live for that matter.

      Heck, I do this travel stuff all the time, unburdened by guilt, as I think what for shorthand purposes can be called Gore-ism is a boondoggle, so travel and tourism are just fine with me. I'm truly curious, though, how devotees of the 'Gore' line reconcile this stuff? I know I couldn't.

      The 'rationale' presumably has to be better than "people are going to travel anyway" or, from those who sell booze and other substances to minors, "if they don't get it from me they'll get it somewhere else" and so on...

      How is flying intercontinentally and 'touring' carbon/eco friendly? As in, more carbon friendly than "stay home and save the planet" (betcha those ads are just round the corner - be fun watching that debate, on the surface it seems like a no-brainer if you are of that persuasion).

      IMPORTANT NOTE: This is not intended to get a 'global warming' debate going. Whether there is or isn't 'global warming' as popularly portrayed isn't the question, or at least isn't my question. That subject is endlessly and appropriately debated in other forums that any of us can go to. What methinks is relevant to CRL and Costa Rica in particular, with CR as a (the?) principal promoter of 'eco-tourism', is how those involved in said promotion who believe in the CO2/catastrophic man made warming thing reconcile what to some like me seems like a contradiction. I'm hoping the answer that so eludes me will create one more small gap in my boundless ignorance.

      Cheers,

      Alec



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    • Vargas-Brownlee Family
      ****** Costa Rica Topic Warning ***** alec kitson wrote: . . . is how those involved in said promotion who believe in the
      Message 2 of 26 , Apr 29, 2007
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        ****** Costa Rica Topic Warning *****


        alec kitson <alec.kitson@...> wrote:
        ". . . is how those involved in said promotion who believe in the CO2/catastrophic man made warming thing reconcile what to some like me seems like a contradiction."

        Those who promote found a nice word that worked "Eco" Ecology. Their job is marketing. Today they promote eco-tourism, tomorrow they may be promoting religion, etc. Do they believe in it? Or are they doing it for the money.

        I firmly belive that most eco-promoters are doing it for the money, the same with most "not" all eco-companies. To them there is no contradiction.

        As they promote keep counting your eco-spoons.

        OEVB

        OEV


        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      • fraluchi
        ... First ask the promoters what they understand by eco-friendly . Then ask what they understand by waste . Finally, ask when, where and how THEY, and not a
        Message 3 of 26 , Apr 29, 2007
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          >
          >
          First ask the promoters what they understand by "eco-friendly".
          Then ask what they understand by "waste".
          Finally, ask when, where and how THEY, and not a third party, recycle
          the waste their guests and/or inhabitants accumulate.
          We're all to blame, really, because we've become so used to
          consumerism that we don't see that we are slowly killing the world
          around us.
          Once that's happened, "Only then will we realize that we can't eat money".
        • Alajuelanorth
          Take a ride to 4 seasons, Papagayo and then a trip to La Armistad lodge on Isla de Chira and ask yourself which one has made less of a change to the
          Message 4 of 26 , Apr 30, 2007
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            Take a ride to 4 seasons, Papagayo and then a trip to La Armistad lodge
            on Isla de Chira and ask yourself which one has made less of a change
            to the environment?
            Berni
          • henry kantrowitz
            it is intesting how alec will make his lengthy statement regarding there is no global warming but then says, he has no eco axe to grind and also doesn t want
            Message 5 of 26 , Apr 30, 2007
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              it is intesting how alec will make his lengthy statement regarding there is no global warming but then says, he has no eco axe to grind and also doesn't want other's to comment on his ill informed thoughts regarding global warming. this forum is about responding to what people have to say. so if you are going to get on your soap box about something expect others to have the right to respond. on the other hand i will honor his request,since to really discuss the uninformed statements he makes, regarding global warming, would take volumes of information.

              the word eco has become the buzz word and has very little validity compared to when it was first used. yes, there are now eco-developements of huge tracts of land being developed into urbinizations and hotels that are not eco friendly at all. costa rica is full of them and growing as more people travel. also there are many eco tours that aren't eco either. eco four wheeling is one that comes to mind and canopy tours.
              it is rather simple and alec is trying to make this a topic hard to understand. the fact is. people are going to fly all over the world, but if you are going to do that why not do it in a more sustainable way, visit tourism facilities that have respect for nature and the planet. which includes sustainablility, such as, as little damage to the envirnoment as possible, recylcling, respect to using energy and water. these progects are also better for the countries that they are in. compare those eco-projects to the huge developements in the papagayo region and the central pacific, where mass consumption of energy, water and the cutting down of dry tropical forests is out of control. projects like these already exist in cancun, hawaii, the caribbean and many other places. costa rica is unique with its abundance of wildlife, true eco-tourism is what can sustain this wildlife.
              it isn't rocket science, people are going to travel and the more sustainable the project you go to the better for the environment. jet travel is here to stay, that doesn't mean our destination has to destroy the environment too.
              so much thought with disregard for what is happening on our planet is very egocentric. the more we as individuals start thinking worldcentric, then will we be able to solve some of our environmental problems.
              henry




              ---------------------------------
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              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            • Paul Gehl
              EDITED TO REMOVE PIGGYBACK MESSAGE. Paul, please do not include the original message when posting. Henry, I understand alec¹s point and indeed he has no ax to
              Message 6 of 26 , Apr 30, 2007
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                EDITED TO REMOVE PIGGYBACK MESSAGE.
                Paul, please do not include the original message when posting.

                Henry,

                I understand alec¹s point and indeed he has no ax to grind. Global warming
                is a belief in a prophecy with billions of dollars flowing to the priests of
                the believers. The facts and history are clear that the earth has gone
                through many solar and axis tilt cycles and has been warmer many times prior
                to today. The Sun is not constant. You believe man is to blame he and I
                don¹t. Your point is based on pure faith. Our point is based on historical
                fact.
                http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=4499562022478442170&q=the+global+war
                ming+video+Uk

                http://www.news.com.au/dailytelegraph/story/0,22049,21636036-5012769,00.html

                The misanthropic priests of the belief system use Eco, green, sustainable as
                part of the blessings of that faith. Many things in the past blessed by
                these words and priests have failed. Jacque Cousteau destroyed the
                Mediterranean Sea by accident, biologist introduced carp to the USA with the
                best of intentions, MTB is a disaster, custom refined gas for each state
                LOL. The funny thing is that almost all of progress is made by companies
                like GM, GE, ADM, NU ..... who have invested in financially viable
                innovations and products people can afford and WANT. Pollution yesterday
                became a new resource and profit center today. They could not afford to dump
                it in the water or air. That is huge progress. Unprofitable Ballard power is
                not.

                On your choice of hotels I¹m quite confused on what you expect people to
                patronize and invest in. Would either be built if people didn¹t come?
                Economically viable is the first test or either is a waste of time money
                materials and land. Henry, nobody is stopping you from buying a piece of
                land and entertaining your guests by sleeping on the ground and packing
                everything in and out including urine and feces, leaving the land exactly
                the way you found it. It may be popular and become all the rage. You might
                have Disney copy your business plan. Who knows? The hotels you seem to
                detest have a proven model and are profitable. Are you surprised they are
                built? ³build a better mouse trap and the world will beat a path to your
                door² Somebody, which could be you, needs to show the way which you suggest
                Rather than taking responsibility for the planet why not take responsibility
                for your ideas and bring them into reality with your own blood sweat tears
                and money.

                Your rationalization about jet travel sounds quite hollow to me. They could
                and should walk or bike, with Co2 filters on, they are your standards, not
                mine.
              • Another Elf
                ... Faith???? You have GOT To be kidding! KB [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                Message 7 of 26 , Apr 30, 2007
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                  >>You believe man is to blame he and I don¹t. Your point is based on pure faith.

                  Faith???? You have GOT To be kidding!

                  KB

                  [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                • Paul Gehl
                  EDITED TO REMOVE PIGGYBACK. Please review list guidelines if you are unfamiliar with how this list works. Global warming is a prediction by some weathermen
                  Message 8 of 26 , Apr 30, 2007
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                    EDITED TO REMOVE PIGGYBACK. Please review list guidelines if you are unfamiliar with how this list works.

                    Global warming is a prediction by some weathermen who speculate Co2 is the
                    cause.

                    Astronomers point to the sun and its cycles which correlate with warming
                    patterns in the earth¹s cycles. The earth was much warmer 1000 years ago,
                    there have been many cycles of warmer climate and higher Co2.

                    Watch the video

                    http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=4499562022478442170&q=the+global+war
                    ming+video+Uk
                  • alec kitson
                    It doesn t matter much, but for what it s worth none of the (ostensible) responses to that Eco-tourism question I posted seemed to have any bearing on said
                    Message 9 of 26 , Apr 30, 2007
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                      It doesn't matter much, but for what it's worth none of the (ostensible) responses to that Eco-tourism question I posted seemed to have any bearing on said question. The off-line stuff came closer and was more interesting.

                      The preamble stuff was to establish that I'm pro-tourism and untroubled by air and car travel. It was a bit wordy for some, I suppose. Since I was musing on the direction the eco/global warming movement is headed in it seemed useful to clarify that I'm not of that fraternity, I disbelieve the 'global warming' stuff Gore & co are touting. I didn't say it's wrong, just that I happen to believe it is.

                      I'm also unpersuaded that 63 virgins await my pleasure if I strap a few kilos of explosives to my chest and detonate it in Macy's; I'm disinclined to think the moon landings were staged on a Hollywood studio; if that Jones guy had asked me to drink the Kool Aid I'd have been the ornery guy who said no. Just a party-pooper I suppose.

                      But I'm sort of interested in how those who, unlike me, do believe in the overwhelming evil of anthropogenic CO2 emissions and that reducing it is the single most critical challenge facing the human race blah, blah (you know the lines) will cope with the new progression of the lobbies who are beginning to picket travel agencies and so on in Europe - we're next. If I believed that global warming/CO2 stuff and had an eco-lodge or whatever I would literally have no answer to the "stay home and save the planet" argument. I mean, how does an eco-proponent finish the sentence "the reason why it's better for the planet for you to take a jet to CR and stay at my place, rather than stay where you are is..."

                      This may well be going nowhere, but here's the question again. In fact I'll cut and paste.

                      "How do those involved in the 'eco tourism' industry reconcile the term 'eco' with people's being encouraged to fly to and tour or hang out at 'eco' places in Costa Rica, incurring the related carbon and other emissions..."

                      " How is flying intercontinentally and 'touring' carbon/eco friendly? As in, more carbon friendly than "stay home and save the planet"

                      Heck, I might be the only one interested in this seeming paradox.

                      There might not be a credible answer, which is what I suspect as I can't think of one. I know if I was an eco-tourism promoter I'd be nervous about the inexorable logic that's coming down the pike, and if I was an eco-nut I couldn't fault that logic. A humble suggestion is to get working on a response.

                      Henry seems to accept as inevitable that people are going to jet where they want when they want and that's OK with him. Me too. But if you accept that as inevitable and people's right as Henry and I seem to, given the associated carbon footprint it's a bit difficult to get on the case of Pathfinder or Ferrari drivers who also have a carbon footprint. Heck, if the latter vacation at the local lake they probably tread more lightly, carbonwise, than the Prius-owning jet-setters chowing on tofu at the old jungle sweat lodge. That has to be frustrating.

                      I'm for tourism, for travel, for choice. Oh, and for choosing what to believe and what not to. I love that we have the choice of both jungle cabinas and 5-star resorts. I lean to the former as a number of CRL travelling companions know, but would never presume to condescend to those who choose differently.

                      Cheers,

                      Alec



                      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                    • lostrin1994
                      Alec, Many enviromentalists, myself included, drive cars and fly around the world. We do this because we have very little choice, other than to stay home,
                      Message 10 of 26 , May 1, 2007
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                        Alec,
                        Many enviromentalists, myself included, drive cars and fly around the
                        world. We do this because we have very little choice, other than to
                        stay home, which is your argument for being a true eco-friendly
                        resident of the planet earth.

                        We left Canada in August 2005 with our 2 little girls and FLEW to CR
                        to visit as many eco-tourism spots that we could because we felt that
                        we were paying lip-service to the environmental movement by living
                        our silly lives in Canada, recycling but driving 2 cars around.

                        For close to 2 years we took buses or rode our bikes or walked and
                        helped out on projects to preserve the endangered sea turtle or
                        support places like Zoo Ave, which breeds endangered birds, among
                        other things. Maybe at the end of it all, our environmental impact
                        was neutral. Even though we were not driving cars, we did fly here
                        and fly home.

                        People like us think about the hypocrisy but we believe that we do
                        what we can. We don't happen to believe that staying home is the
                        answer.

                        You ask:

                        > "How do those involved in the 'eco tourism' industry reconcile the
                        term 'eco' with people's being encouraged to fly to and tour or hang
                        out at 'eco' places in Costa Rica, incurring the related carbon and
                        other emissions..."

                        Your question is much too broad. Some folks in the eco-tourism
                        industry don't think about it the hypocrisy, others do gnash their
                        teeth.


                        If I can answer another question, we feel that travelling through
                        Central America with our children, although environmentally
                        unfriendly because we took an airplane, went a long way to exposing
                        them to a first hand look at things like poverty, pollution,
                        conservation and thousands of other things too numerous to mention.
                        But their education on those matters is now unsurpassed. Maybe an
                        enlightened, educated child is exactly what the planet needs right
                        now.

                        And one more thing. Every Canadian knows who David Suzuki is. Are
                        you Canadian Alec? If you're not and you don't know who he is,
                        please google him. I rely on well-respected scientists like him who
                        have dedicated their lives to providing me with well-studied
                        information on the environment instead of thinking about global
                        warming as a belief. One person cannot know everything about
                        everything. But I will sit up and listen to world class scientists
                        all over the world who are warning us and who have been warning us
                        for years that we need to reduce our greenhouse gases.

                        Kind regards,
                        Janet
                      • webbsource05
                        Alec--Trying to reply privately to your post but your Canadian provider excluded my e mail. I am a semi-retired Intenet developer and your provider has been a
                        Message 11 of 26 , May 1, 2007
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                          Alec--Trying to reply privately to your post but your Canadian provider
                          excluded my e mail. I am a semi-retired Intenet developer and your
                          provider has been a problemfor the 14 years I have been in the business
                          Do you have a yahoo address??

                          Sherman
                        • alec kitson
                          Sherman I replied to you offline and you re right, your provider and mine do not like to talk to each other! I got this back from your guys We do not accept
                          Message 12 of 26 , May 1, 2007
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                            Sherman

                            I replied to you offline and you're right, your provider and mine do not like to talk to each other! I got this back from your guys

                            "We do not accept email from this domain due to prior Email abuse",

                            ...presumably referring to Sympatico which is a Bell service and is Canada's largest provider. 2+ million subscribers in this province alone or so their blurb says.

                            Here's what I sent you. Alec

                            --------------------


                            Sherman,

                            I only use the Sympatico address.

                            Sympatico is probably the biggest provider in Canada - it's Bell. I dunno why you can't reach it but I don't know much about either computers or how the whole internet thingy works. Others sure aren't having a problem, I have a busy inbox on the subject since raising this topic...

                            Try again maybe? Heck, if all else fails you might have to post on CRL!

                            Best

                            Alec

                            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                          • alec kitson
                            Nice reply, Janet. I think it s great that you have the means to travel with your family and that you do. Me too. It s all the educational things you list. And
                            Message 13 of 26 , May 1, 2007
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                              Nice reply, Janet.

                              I think it's great that you have the means to travel with your family and that you do. Me too. It's all the educational things you list. And I don't think it's very damaging to the 'environment'. But David Suzuki does. Yep, I'm Canadian, before that a Brit, and have been a Canadian long enough to remember Suzuki when he was sane.

                              (OK, kidding).

                              You do seem to embody and cheerfully admit to some of the contradictions guys like me see in many self-described environmentalists and indeed in some of the 'eco-tourism' world. The paradox of apparently believing the Suzuki and Gore line, bigtime jet-setters both though they are, that goes something like 'man-made carbon emissions are dooming the planet', then somehow exempting oneself at least in part from the associated mantra of avoiding emitting carbon as much as possible. You and Henry both seem accept the inevitability of jet travel and the right to it, as I do - do you think 'our' carbon is somehow different from the soccer mom's, hauling kids in her Ford or Chevy or whatever, or Bubba's as he heads to NASCAR in his dualie? I don't think the planet does, do you? Luckily for me, I don't think it matters much.

                              Heck, it's easy for me and those of like mind who don't think there's a crisis, but as you imply, there's more than a little agonizing going on in eco-ranks and it's started to reach tourism and travel which is particularly important to CR. I suppose environmentalists could (they do, actually) ask whether staying local is really too much to pay in exchange for saving mankind blah, blah. Or they might ask whether it's OK if every other family on the planet jets and drives all over the globe as soon as they get rich enough to do so (that's happening too). Kinda tough to proscribe that which we do ourselves, isn't it? But that's a heck of a lot of contrails and tailpipe emissions coming down the pike for those who worry about same.

                              Thanks for the reasoned response.

                              Kind regards back,

                              Alec

                              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                            • Paul Gehl
                              Janet, It would seem that some sort of voluntary permit should be in order for your personal life so that people don¹t have to speculate on travel or cars to
                              Message 14 of 26 , May 1, 2007
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                                Janet,

                                It would seem that some sort of voluntary permit should be in order for your
                                personal life so that people don¹t
                                have to speculate on travel or cars to buy and what is green and what is
                                not. Huge restrictions are being debated for countries, companies, and
                                people.
                                the
                                > term 'eco' with people's being encouraged to fly to and tour or hang
                                > out at 'eco' places in Costa Rica, incurring the related carbon and
                                > other emissions..."
                                >
                                > Your question is much too broad. Some folks in the eco-tourism
                                > industry don't think about it the hypocrisy, others do gnash their
                                > teeth.
                                >
                                > If I can answer another question, we feel that travelling through
                                > Central America with our children, although environmentally
                                > unfriendly because we took an airplane, went a long way to exposing
                                > them to a first hand look at things like poverty, pollution,
                                > conservation and thousands of other things too numerous to mention.
                                > But their education on those matters is now unsurpassed. Maybe an
                                > enlightened, educated child is exactly what the planet needs right
                                > now.
                                >
                                > And one more thing. Every Canadian knows who David Suzuki is. Are
                                > you Canadian Alec? If you're not and you don't know who he is,
                                > please google him. I rely on well-respected scientists like him who
                                > have dedicated their lives to providing me with well-studied
                                > information on the environment instead of thinking about global
                                > warming as a belief. One person cannot know everything about
                                > everything. But I will sit up and listen to world class scientists
                                > all over the world who are warning us and who have been warning us
                                > for years that we need to reduce our greenhouse gases.
                                >
                                > Kind regards,
                                > Janet
                                >
                                >
                                >




                                [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                              • pregnantstocks
                                Sorry about the last post my computer mashed it. here s another try Janet, It would seem that some sort of voluntary permit should be in order for your
                                Message 15 of 26 , May 1, 2007
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                                  Sorry about the last post my computer mashed it. here's another try

                                  Janet,

                                  It would seem that some sort of voluntary permit should be in order for your personal life so
                                  that people don't
                                  have to speculate on travel or cars to buy and what is green and what is not. Huge
                                  restrictions are being debated for countries, companies, and people.
                                  The best way to lead is from the front. If the Eco minded crowd got their approved permits
                                  from those
                                  seeking the legislation it would be an example on how easy it is to be green should
                                  legislation pass.
                                  If you can live and thrive under those restrictions we all may come around. Data could be
                                  kept on the success and costs. It would seem reasonable that all those who are trying to be
                                  green get confirmation prior to the rest of us having to live that way.

                                  I would be happy to debate David Suzuki's papers with you line by line and you may have a
                                  different opinion when we are done.

                                  Paul
                                • lostrin1994
                                  Sorry Paul, even with the 2nd message I had trouble understanding what you were trying to say, but it sounded interesting. Costa Rica ranks right up there in
                                  Message 16 of 26 , May 1, 2007
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                                    Sorry Paul, even with the 2nd message I had trouble understanding
                                    what you were trying to say, but it sounded interesting.

                                    Costa Rica ranks right "up there" in terms of protected National
                                    Parks, certainly Tortuguero is an example of a tourism destination
                                    that could be considered eco-friendly. Too little space to support
                                    my argument but I want to say that though I think Costa Rica is WAY
                                    overrated in terms of eco-tourism, it beats what the rest of Central
                                    America has done. Actually I think very little separates Costa Rica
                                    form the rest of the region with the exception being its non-
                                    militarized status and its National Parks system. Other than that
                                    its development up for grabs, just the other countries we visited
                                    recently.

                                    But I think it's interesting that folks will travel such a long way
                                    to see Tortuguero, a community with no banks, that is VERY hard to
                                    get to and where hardly any businesses take Visa and still the
                                    people pack the place. Similar circumstances for Monteverde. Disney
                                    has recently announced that it will begin eco-tours to Costa Rica
                                    consisting of Parks like Manuel Antonio and Monteverde and will cost
                                    families a mere $10,000 for 4 people for a week. Land sakes alive!

                                    But at the end of the day people may appreciate the tour and think
                                    twice about using pesticides on their lawn back home, I don't know.

                                    Paul, unless you are a professional scientist with an advanced
                                    degree it would be futile to go over Suzuki's work. I won't
                                    understand half of what you say. And if you are, better to go over
                                    it with him directly, and schedule a press conference while you're
                                    at it because your information will undoubedtly be cutting edge.


                                    Kind regards,

                                    Janet
                                  • Larry Rusin
                                    Alec, The eco label that is tagged onto various businesses or other enterprises is simply a come on to sell to like minded people who believe in the same
                                    Message 17 of 26 , May 1, 2007
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                                      Alec,

                                      The eco label that is tagged onto various businesses or other enterprises is simply a come on to sell to like minded people who believe in the same phenomenon. There are millions of them. The market is large. They have had over thirty years to sell their stories. If the buyer believes they are doing a good deed by going to a place that is offering earth friendly habitations or non-polluting, eco-friendly stays, etc. means nothing in reality except, those who are using the term are selling their goods or services to like minded people. It’s a clique’. I agree with what someone said about the “Green” movement being akin to a religion. I have been saying that for thirty or more years. It is replete with their “High Priests”, scientists that are mouthing the party line and those poor souls who don’t seem to have a mind of their own or an original thought.

                                      How anyone could possibly believe a group of scientists could gather enough information together, feed it into a computer and come up with anything accurate about the weather is living somewhere between the Twightlight Zone and the Outer Limits? That isn’t close to anything I would consider reality. Modern Day weather people can’t even get the weather right from week to week much less make predictions about what is suppose to inform mankind what the weather is going to be like in a month much less 100 years or longer in to the future.

                                      It all comes down to marketing. When someone comes up with a marketing gimmick that sells and environmentalism does sell to the people who believe in it. With that concept in mind, millions begin to buy into that particular belief, and it makes them feel good about it once they do, you have a marketing scheme that is a winner. Environmentalism is a suave marketing devise that has captured the imagination of those who obviously have too much money, or time on their hands and are possibly feeling guilty about it and are non-compos mentis. It is too bad that the duped cannot see what has happened to them.

                                      Let’s see, here are some of the songs being sung today: The ice caps are going to melt. The earth is being poisoned. There are too many people being born and the earth cannot support them all. Too many trees are being cut down and the earth and of course the species inhabiting it are all going to die. The bees are all dying and what will we all do when there are no more plants being pollinated? It goes on and on and it is pathetic.

                                      It reminds me of the late Carl Sagan telling us about nuclear war. First there was to be a nuclear winter and nothing was going to grow so man was going to starve. Let’s not forget about the firestorms that was going to incinerate us all. Then the weather would turn so cold that we were all going to freeze to death. I wondered then and still do, how many times are we going to die?

                                      First of all, we live in a modern era, it is one of the greatest times to ever be living on this earth. We have miracles of science at our disposal in every corner of life. There are miraculous food growing processes, there is more food being grown on less land than at any other time in the history of the earth as recorded by someone at some stage in the development of civilization. We have the benefits of modern medicine and drugs to cure many sicknesses and diseases that at one time went through mankind like a sickle through the wheat fields. Polio and Small Pox has been eradicated. Seldom do you hear about the Black Plague cutting down more than a few hunters in Tehachapi, California. Education, sanitation, modern conveniences such as TV and telephones and the list is endless of the miracles at modern man’s disposal, and yet, there are the spoiled sports who want to scare everyone into believe the sky is falling. The clever ones are those who are making huge bucks off
                                      the environmental scams. Al Gore is one of them. He is making so much money that it dwarfs the economy of some countries and it’s all a scam. This is from a man who was selling overnight stays in the American White House for $100,000 a night.

                                      People live much longer today than they did a hundred years ago. On average people lived to be fifty five. Today it is not uncommon for people to live into their late seventies and some into their eighties. There is also the fact that people are growing taller and healthier than they were a hundred years ago. If the planet was so bad off, poisoned, and unhealthy as some would have all of us believe, why then is the phenomenon of bigger and healthier people happening to the generations that are coming along? It is happening because of modern science not the latest eco-religions sprouting up all over the world.

                                      I like the way you think and speak Alec. I for one can’t abide by unproven science especially when it should be obvious that there are people making so much money off the concept and that there is one and only one reason to continue selling their religion, big bucks, the more believers the more contributions. The more contributions, the more money available for Wall Street Advertising firms to sell more of the untruths and outright unproven, so called facts. When you have people who declare themselves to be Naturalists and they are telling you that the sky is falling, I’d be dubious about buying into their religion or their doom and gloom stories or believing anything they say about anything at all.

                                      There are those who scream about it, they come up with statistics but never offer any proof that can be verified. I say offer source, chapter, paragraph. Proof is tough to show when it is so much easier to just say things like “The Earth is Poisoned.” Who says so? What proof do they have to throw on the table to back up their claims? Just because some person wrote a book about it doesn’t make it so. These so called scientists who are offering proof about Global Warming are having their proof or their findings refuted by other scientists. Many of the refuters are renowned in their fields. In my humble opinion, the weather phenomenon and the environmental movement is all about money and always was. It is all about the new religion and the followers that follow like the Lemmings and don’t know where they are going until they are falling off a cliff.

                                      Regards,
                                      LR









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                                    • henry kantrowitz
                                      one of the things i was hearing is that eco-friendly lodges are not economically viable. i know of a number of econmically viable, eco-friendly, sustainable
                                      Message 18 of 26 , May 1, 2007
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                                        one of the things i was hearing is that eco-friendly lodges are not economically viable. i know of a number of econmically viable, eco-friendly, sustainable lodges here in costa rica. i have personally worked as the resident interpretive naturalist in two extremely successfult eco-lodges. i guess paul and alec, with their sarcasm, don't understand sustainable develpement and travel. i have never professed a lodge should require what paul considers eco-friendly. with his thinking it is all or nothing. as for alec, it is feasable to have environmentally friendly destinations around the world. thinking that flying to a distination is hypocritical is being very narrow sighted and not looking at the bigger picture. what you are flying to, and what you are going to do, when you arrive, is what has the most impact. it seems alec thinks eco-friendly is all or nothing and that is not the case.

                                        paul said i should open my own lodge and shed my own blood, sweat, tears and money. i don't have the money to build an eco-friendly lodge, nor is that my goal or want in life. nor do i want to shed my own blood, sweat, tears and money for something i don't have an interest in. i prefer to work at eco-lodges where i can educate guests about the the rainforest and show them what they can do to help sustain the environment of the rainforest.

                                        paul in some ways seems to question my integrity regarding my way of thinking. i am a conservationist and environmentalist, oh and by the way a human being from the planet earth. as for our own style of living, i do practice what i preach. we live on five hectarias. i have planted over 400 trees native to our zone, several hundred plants for the local wildlife. the over used condition of our land is now regenerating to a much more natural state. we live in a 610 sq. ft. house we built. we are basically vegetarians and recycle everything we can. i have done a release progect of iguanas in our area and set up a breeding sight for them. almost all of the iguanas around here were eaten in the past. the gov't. agency minae, brings us any wildlife that they come across that needs rehabilitation, which we do when we can. in the future i am going to open up a nursery selling native trees for our area. we have enough money to live on and are much happier than my
                                        wealthier friends back in the u.s. so please don't tell me what i should or shouldn't do. i just don't talk it, i live it. the only blood, sweat and tears i will get, is from listening to the rock group. which is something an environmentalist can do.
                                        henry


                                        ---------------------------------
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                                      • manateepress
                                        ... There s no doubt that the smaller operations are better for the environment and better for the locals. There are hundreds of them in Costa Rica. It s sad
                                        Message 19 of 26 , May 1, 2007
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                                          RE: --- In CostaRicaLiving@yahoogroups.com, "Alajuelanorth" <bernij@...> wrote:
                                          >
                                          > Take a ride to 4 seasons, Papagayo .. La Amistad lodge
                                          > on Isla de Chira ... which one has made less of a change
                                          > to the environment?
                                          > Berni

                                          There's no doubt that the smaller operations are better for the environment and better for
                                          the locals. There are hundreds of them in Costa Rica. It's sad that the movie "stars" who
                                          visit Costa Rica stay at the Four Seasons.

                                          The arguments offered against environmentalism seem very out-of-touch and not based
                                          on fact. Anyone who bothers to keep informed can see that there are severe pollution
                                          problems, dying coral reefs, disappearing worker bees, a drought in Australia, the near
                                          disappearance of sea turtles worldwide, etc. Resource extraction, as an economic
                                          phenomenon, dwarfs everything else. And these resources have been squandered. There
                                          are two new books on the subject which are on my reading list:

                                          http://www.slate.com/id/2163389/entry/0/

                                          http://www.oilonthebrain.com/
                                        • PAUL GEHL
                                          Henry, I believe I really don t have the right to tell you what to do or not do. Just as I believe you don t have the right to tell hotel owners what to build
                                          Message 20 of 26 , May 2, 2007
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                                            Henry,

                                            I believe I really don't have the right to tell you what to do or not do. Just as I believe you don't have the right to tell hotel owners what to build or how to build it. What I was suggesting was that if you wish hotels to be built a certain way then it would be your responsibility to build one that way.

                                            I did not question your integrity. You and I are discussing a subject the fact that we don't agree doesn't question either of our characters or integrity. I hear you do good work. I applaud what you mentioned. Thanks for a job well done. A discussion on issues need not become personal. It is a discussion and was the major form of social recreation until somewhere in the 1970s. I still like to do it but very few people can nowadays as they very quickly get into personal attack and all the fun is gone.

                                            Henry, I think my idea of Eco-permits for CR is a great idea. Why should some one like you vs others that have done little be painted with the same brush. Suzuki, Greenpeace, and others Eco organizations could issue the permits to use eco or green labels in CR. They get a small fee to handle the process and the it costs the CR government $0. CR could even tax those that apply and then don't make the grade or fall off the wagon until compliance is met. Then the fakes could not benefit and flying to CR would be green or not green.

                                            Paul


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                                          • Larry Rusin
                                            Global Warming and the Doom and Gloom. I am a subscriber to the philosophy that “If it isn’t Broken, don’t try to fix it.” If people living on this
                                            Message 21 of 26 , May 2, 2007
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                                              Global Warming and the Doom and Gloom.

                                              I am a subscriber to the philosophy that “If it isn’t Broken, don’t try to fix it.” If people living on this planet want to do something about the true ills of Mother Earth, then I am all for it and would and have many times in the past supported those efforts. On the other hand, throwing hundreds of millions of dollars toward fixes that include the CFR replacements, the ripping out and replacing of Asbestos and a certain group wanting the more affluent societies to foot the bill for lowering CO2 I have to stop and take a closer look at that one.

                                              There are problems in the world that need to be addressed without a doubt. The many rivers and streams that are polluted should be cleaned up. The world’s oceans are becoming more and more contaminated and need to be addressed if anything can be successfully accomplished toward that endeavor. The oceans are being over fished. Countries and manufacturers are dumping hazardous waste wherever they think they can get away with it. In some cases that contamination is reaching and merging with groundwater. The Russians have a terrible track record about what they are doing with nuclear wastes from their power stations and antiquated nuclear submarines. China is another nation that disregards all the rules and does what it wants to. The list goes on and on. That is where groups that want to make a difference in the world should be concentrating their efforts. To tell the rest of the world that people are causing their own demise because of CO2 emissions is a little over
                                              simplistic. That pales in comparison to real worldwide problems because even though there are the devotees toward that so called problem, it has not been categorically proven to be more than a theory brought about by people who programmed a computer with information that may or may not have been factual in the first place.

                                              When I was studying at the University level I was always taught the difference between fact and theory is, once an idea is proven beyond any doubt, it becomes a Law. If it can’t be proven it remains a theory. The scientific community at large must embrace it as a whole at the same time once it is determined to be a law. Global Warming has as many legitimate and degreed scientists telling us that it may be something that is happening but it is not caused by man, that it is a cyclic weather pattern or a dozen other stories. There are those who are telling anyone who will listen CO2 levels are resulting from the consumption of fossil fuels. There are those scientific people who are looking at the phenomenon and telling us it is most certainly happening, and therefore the problem is real. There are people writing books, others are making documentaries while some are lecturing about it and there are as many telling the world yes it is as there are those saying no it isn’t
                                              being caused by man. The opinions are so varied and oscillating it is difficult staying focused.

                                              First of all you need credentials to say these things for or against. Then you have to be a member of a particular discipline that dovetails with other disciplines in order to be believed. The studies must be unbiased, they must be conducted in laboratories or in the field to gather the data, and then the work must be verified by others not involved in that study but have the credentials to analyze the completed work. This all takes years to get done. Once it is done, the completed work is presented to the world scientific community for review. That is when the rest of the mortals will have some sort of an idea of the validity of the problem when the results are made public. The controversy is so large about Global Warming as to be in serious questions by those of us who do understand what they are hearing and reading about it.

                                              When a group of people who are motivated by fear are demanding changes be made, the people who are going to pay for those changes must understand what it is the fearful are asking for. They are asking as near as I can calculate trillions of dollars to make the changes come about. If in fact the USA was to agree to this theory, the average home owner would no longer be a homeowner, and if they were lucky enough to remain in custody of their own home the probabilities are very good that home would not have central heat, no electricity and no running water in it. That is because the average American would barely have enough money left to buy food which would become in limited supply. The Kyoto Protocol is asking for trillion and from the US.

                                              Other groups are motivated by generating billions of dollars every year to stay in business. That business of Environmentalism needs lawyers, advertising companies, film crews, ads in various magazines and newspapers and don’t forget TV. It needs to cultivate famous people to spew their slogans and to do their advertising for them. The bottom line is it takes trainloads of dollars to do the work of telling you and me about how terrible we are to the earth.

                                              I sincerely understand there are those who believe in what they believe. It makes no difference what the subject matter is what matters is, to what degree these people will go to make the rest of us believe. The people who spike trees in the forests, or sabotage equipment, throw paint on someone’s clothing, sack and raid a laboratory, sit up in a Sequoia tree for months on end, or who will spread deceit and misinformation enough times in order to make the untruth begin to sound true. People who are the true zealots are terrorists in no uncertain terms. If they spread lies and misinformation it is a criminal act that more likely than not will go unpunished. The most unfortunate of the circumstances that occur is, money that could be channeled toward real problems is diverted by the scammers and the real fixes go on causing the damage because nobody is concentrating on the real, only the imaginary. It is the easy things that get the money.

                                              Regards,
                                              LR


                                              ---------------------------------
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                                            • sarah_joy_staude
                                              ... Funny you should make this suggestion... this has already been attempted two or more times... One try was by the ICT board:
                                              Message 22 of 26 , May 2, 2007
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                                                --- In CostaRicaLiving@yahoogroups.com, "PAUL GEHL" <pgstocks@wrote:
                                                >Eco organizations could issue the permits to use eco or green labels in
                                                >CR. ...CR could even tax those that apply and then don't make the grade
                                                >or fall off the wagon until compliance is met.

                                                Funny you should make this suggestion... this has already been
                                                attempted two or more times...

                                                One try was by the ICT board:
                                                http://www.turismo-sostenible.co.cr/EN/home.shtml
                                                We've found the information to be out of date and written in a
                                                confusing manner - overall the rating system is abysmal and hard to
                                                follow - just because a hotel is listed doesn't mean it receives even
                                                a passing grade. It's obviously a survey that the management of the
                                                hotel just fills out... and how honest is it going to be on average,
                                                do you think? Additionally, the people going to the sites to review
                                                are on the ICE technical team... seriously, what do they know about
                                                rating ecological hotels?

                                                There was another ecological rating program several years ago (before
                                                I first visited in 2003):
                                                Turtle Rating Program - Hotels would have had been awarded between 1
                                                and 5 turtle icons (or maybe it was 1-10 turtle icons) depending on
                                                the level of ecologically-friendly-ness. The rumor I heard was that
                                                big resort hotels "killed" that idea since they wouldn't even have
                                                qualified for the program.

                                                Anyone who has more in-depth perspective on these two programs... I'd
                                                love to hear them!
                                              • sarah_joy_staude
                                                Maybe those of us who are involved in eco-tourism in Costa Rica should consider be encouraging our visitors to visit this website and do something about
                                                Message 23 of 26 , May 2, 2007
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                                                  Maybe those of us who are involved in eco-tourism in Costa Rica should
                                                  consider be encouraging our visitors to visit this website and do
                                                  something about offsetting their carbon footprints for jet and "eco"
                                                  travel as well as their regular lifestyle: www.carbonfootprint.com

                                                  (Kudos to any and all who are already doing this!)
                                                • Thor
                                                  It is unfortunate that the make a buck crowd has latched on to the ecological movement and quality of life issues as marketing tools for products and
                                                  Message 24 of 26 , May 3, 2007
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                                                    It is unfortunate that the "make a buck" crowd has latched on to the
                                                    ecological movement and quality of life issues as marketing tools for
                                                    products and services that are so in name only. They are taking
                                                    advantage of those who sincerely are concerned about our lifestyles
                                                    and impact on the planet. As people become more educated and aware the
                                                    charlatans will be exposed as well as our own hypocritical behavior.
                                                    The positive thing is that all this controversy is a reflection of a
                                                    growing market that desires change and indicative of a growing
                                                    cultural shift towards the demand for more sustainable models of growth.

                                                    Ecological, consumer culture and similar issues and conflicts are
                                                    debated within social and ecological forums. There is no silver bullet
                                                    but rather a process of experimentation and co-operation in developing
                                                    alternatives. National Parks, development restrictions, reforestation,
                                                    purchasing carbon credits, recycling, local tourism initiatives, fair
                                                    trade, organic produce, volunteerism, and the simplicity movement are
                                                    examples. Some aspects of these programs have proven to be a failure
                                                    but from those failures new experiments and solutions evolve. Even the
                                                    development of aircraft and automobiles went through this process. Why
                                                    should they be considered to have reached some pinnacle to be defended?

                                                    As to the flight emissions issue, because of actions such as Alec's
                                                    this issue has come to the forefront within the environmental
                                                    movement. Articles are being posted making people aware of the
                                                    environmental and social damage caused by tourism regardless of how
                                                    low the impact is. Local tourism based on hiking and biking are being
                                                    promoted as alternatives. Carbon credits are a temporary solution that
                                                    has many faults but demonstrates an attempt to address the conflict.
                                                    What are the underlying reasons and motivations for your traveling?
                                                    Janet pointed out the enlightened and educated child may influence the
                                                    behavior of a future generation in a way that those who frequent Wally
                                                    World never will.

                                                    I prefer to be a hypocrite than defend behavior, which I no longer can
                                                    justify whether I participate in it, or not. As it relates to being a
                                                    polluter, a smoker, a consumer I accept and encourages legislation
                                                    towards remedying or altering such behavior even when it infringes on
                                                    those addictions that I have become accustomed to. I certainly don't
                                                    promote my faults to others or encourage the next generation, as did
                                                    the previous one with me. They did so largely out of ignorance, what
                                                    is my excuse?

                                                    Why is aviation fuel exempted from taxation? Why do we promote
                                                    vacation travel through subsidies in the building of airport
                                                    infrastructure? Possibly the aircraft industry would pursue a program
                                                    of being more efficient and less polluting if their bottom line was
                                                    affected. Possibly the weekend jaunts to Vegas and packaged holiday in
                                                    Cancun would be less appealing if indirectly they weren't subsidized
                                                    and consequently became more expensive. I suspect that cultural
                                                    exchanges, learning experiences and nature-based trips would be
                                                    impacted as well but less so. I doubt that the participants would
                                                    object to the increased costs if they associated it with those values
                                                    they believe in.

                                                    The greatest obstacle to change is overcoming the resistance put up by
                                                    those who defend the status quo. One method they use is attacking the
                                                    behavior of those in the forefront of alternative movements. This in
                                                    my opinion is a straw man tactic designed to deflect the debate from
                                                    the underlying issues to one of character. History is full of examples
                                                    such as slave owners who were in favor of abolition, aristocrats that
                                                    promoted democracy, chauvinists that supported the woman's movement
                                                    and so on and on. Focusing on hypocrisy to debunk a movement is a form
                                                    of character assassination, which is used because it is far easier
                                                    than discrediting an idea whose time has come.

                                                    "Something earth-changing is afoot among civil society"
                                                    http://www.alternet.org/envirohealth/51088/

                                                    "This is the first time in history that a large social movement is not
                                                    bound together by an "ism." What binds it together is ideas, not
                                                    ideologies. This unnamed movement's big contribution is the absence of
                                                    one big idea; in its stead it offers thousands of practical and useful
                                                    ideas. In place of isms are processes, concerns, and compassion. The
                                                    movement demonstrates a pliable, resonant, and generous side of
                                                    humanity…The promise of this unnamed movement is to offer solutions to
                                                    what appear to be insoluble dilemmas: poverty, global climate change,
                                                    terrorism, ecological degradation, polarization of income, loss of
                                                    culture. It is not burdened with a syndrome of trying to save the
                                                    world; it is trying to remake the world.
                                                    Inspiration is not garnered from litanies of what is flawed; it
                                                    resides in humanity's willingness to restore, redress, reform,
                                                    recover, re-imagine, and reconsider. "

                                                    Regards
                                                    Thor
                                                  • Mary and Jeff Hickcox
                                                    I am having a hard time understanding WHY its so bad to try and make money and market a product that you know is a GOOD thing for the world!! The real trouble
                                                    Message 25 of 26 , May 3, 2007
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                                                      I am having a hard time understanding WHY its so bad to try and make money and market a product that you know is a GOOD thing for the world!!

                                                      The real trouble here is that the people trying to start up an honest and green business are being bought out and controlled through lobbyists in Congress. They are dictating the laws, like always, and the little guy gets hurt in the end. Big oil ends up getting their meaty paws on the gresen movement as well, and then falsely market it as if they are doing good for anyone!! Talk about someone just trying to GRAB a piece of the money!!





                                                      Mary
                                                      mama to Dylan (8) Colin (3 1/2) and a little angel due 9/04/07

                                                      "Be who you want your children to be."
                                                      unknown

                                                      "Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies, in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed."
                                                      -Dwight D. Eisenhower, U.S. general and 34th president (1890-1969)

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                                                    • chrisyhector
                                                      Hello Group, I have to admit I don t see any eco in ecotourism when you have large hotels shipping in people on buses etc. but didn t the whole idea of
                                                      Message 26 of 26 , May 3, 2007
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                                                        Hello Group,
                                                        I have to admit I don't see any "eco" in "ecotourism" when you have
                                                        large hotels shipping in people on buses etc. but didn't the whole
                                                        idea of stepping out and specifying "ecotourism" include people that
                                                        want to help appreciate, protect and conserve biodiversity? And if
                                                        they are thinking about this, then I rather doubt they would do the
                                                        papagayo thing etc anyway. The whole problem with any kind of
                                                        emotional marketing is just that, if the consumer decides to believe
                                                        that they are choosing an "eco-tour" just because it's in Costa Rica
                                                        known for its natural paradise, and doesn't do any research on the
                                                        places that they'll be staying etc. then they have already
                                                        been "blinded" by "commericialism" or whatever you want to call it. I
                                                        think one of the most healthy things that we should teach our children
                                                        is critical thinking and responsibilty for our actions. The media and
                                                        such just take advantage of the fact that many of us succumb to an
                                                        easy out - and don't use our brain to analyse things and see things
                                                        from different perspectives. That's one of the reasons I keep up with
                                                        CRL and like to read everyone's posts, whether I agree or not.

                                                        If any of you would like a real option and DO something about
                                                        promoting biodiversity and reforestation feel free to contact us,
                                                        ReforestCostaRica.com. We've just finished rescuing 7,000 trees up in
                                                        the cloud forest above Sarchi and have a couple on going reforestation
                                                        projects in the San Carlos/Arenal area.

                                                        "How do those involved in the 'eco tourism' industry reconcile the
                                                        term 'eco' with people's being encouraged to fly to and tour or hang
                                                        out at 'eco' places in Costa Rica, incurring the related carbon and
                                                        other emissions that are so exciting the, er, excitable at the moment?"

                                                        Maybe they plant enough trees and plants, or use renewable
                                                        resources...

                                                        "For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction..."

                                                        Christina
                                                        ReforestCostaRica.com
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