At GreenWatch we now have archived an interactive list of the “worst environmental prophecies of catastrophic doom.” It is a list of eleven of the most interesting and pointed cases of environmental activists raising the red alert, and the unintended fall out from it.
The one below is my favorite, recycling did help, and may be emotionally virtuous and self-gratifying, but it may also be a giant waste of time and energy resources. (Video link: caution adult language, ear-muffs for the under-age readers.)
Al Gore was once a garbage alarmist. In the 1980s he worried that America would run out of space to handle its garbage. Gore claimed the U.S. was “running out of ways to dispose of our waste in a manner that keeps it out of either sight or mind.” The actual problem was skewed data: In the 1980s the waste disposal industry did close many small landfills, but it began to open large high capacity landfills as well as explore new methods of incineration and recycling. Environmental alarmists ignored this development. Recent data indicates that with fewer but larger landfills, the United States can accommodate at least 25% more trash with no danger of running out of future waste storage space.