Ecology – The efforts of NGO

November 4, 2008 at 1:58 pm Leave a comment

Greenpeace is an international non-government organization (NGO) with the goal of protecting and conserving the environment and also promoting peace. It has several offices worldwide and is one of the largest NGOs for the conserving of environment.

According to the official website: http://www.greenpeace.org

Greenpeace is an independent global campaigning organization that acts to change attitudes and behavior, to protect and conserve the environment and to promote peace by:

Catalysing an energy revolution to address the number one threat facing our planet: climate change.
Defending our oceans by challenging wasteful and destructive fishing, and creating a global network of marine reserves.
Protecting the world’s ancient forests and the animals, plants and people that depend on them.
Working for disarmament and peace by tackling the causes of conflict and calling for the elimination of all nuclear weapons.
Creating a toxic free future with safer alternatives to hazardous chemicals in today’s products and manufacturing.
Campaining for sustainable agriculture by rejecting genetically engineered organisms, protecting biodiversity and encouraging socially responsible farming.

It may seem good and useful to have a NGO like this to care for our earth. However, does this NGO really do contribute a lot in conserving our environment. It has the mission to raise public awareness, and we all know that the problems that we are facing in our world, but really do their efforts count?

There are several victories cases, which the Greenpeace deemed to have directly caused the environmental changes. For example please visit http://www.greenpeace.org/international/about/victories. However, the problems are still there. The three major issues that concerning the environment of the earth are global warming, the depletion of o-zone and acid rain (Mark Seis: Protection of the Atmospheric Commons). International agreements are signed but the results are not satisfying. NGOs are really helpless in dealing with these kinds of issues. Indeed they gave pressure to the government, but it is hardly that the government will sacrifice their own benefits for the sake of it.

Let me take another example, Greenpeace is famous for its efforts to prevent the excess captures of whales. It has boats to go on and prevent the killing of whales. I couldn’t say that it is of no use, but the capture of whales is too complex to prevent. Japan consumes large amount of whale for food and if they ever stop catching whales they are facing problems. Although much of the efforts are made, it is up to the consumers to the conscious of not eating whale. I believe that the theory of “Whenever there is demand there is supply” is true to some extent. The better solution is if we stop eating whales then the results will be much significant.

Sometimes, Greenpeace are criticized of being too over and extreme, According to the news, the environmentalists even go as far as climbing on a plane to protest of building a new airway. (http://edition.cnn.com/2008/WORLD/europe/02/25/heathrow.protest/index.html) Their argument was “We’re reasonable people but we just felt we had to take this action today because there’s nothing else we can do within our power to stop climate change.” and yet again sometimes it proved that the NGOs are helpless in dealing with environment problems.

Patrick Moore, co-founder and former leader of Greenpeace, left Greenpeace because “I observed that none of my fellow directors had any formal science education. They were either political activists or environmental entrepreneurs. Ultimately, a trend toward abandoning scientific objectivity in favor of political agendas forced me to leave Greenpeace in 1986.” http://online.wsj.com/article/SB120882720657033391.html?mod=opinion_main_commentaries

Patrick Moore is a Ph.D in Ecology and it left us questions whether the NGOs are all fully committed to the conserving of environment or are there anything else in behind.

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