A Global Green Deal by Mark Hertsgaard: An Evaluation

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"A Global Green Deal," by Mark Hertsgaard: An Evaluation

Efficiency is nearly always a good thing. Businesses and organizations strive to improve efficiency, professional sports teams thrive on efficiency, and most people welcome efficiency in their lives as a way to make them more productive, save money, and deliver a better quality of life. So it makes perfect sense that efficiency in the manner with which we treat our environment would be a good thing. That much I am certain of and don't need to be convinced. In a "Global Green Deal" Hertsgaard asserts that our planet is in peril and that repairing it can be a profitable enterprise. This eye-catching opening most certainly garners mass appeal to those already convinced of widespread environmental recklessness. He likens his world vision of profitability by environmental renovation to the technology boom, somehow suggesting that without the U.S. government, we'd still be using pens and scrolls and that the U.S. government is the key to world environmental salvation. In this essay, I will examine the statements and positions outlined in "A Global Green Deal" and offer my unqualified opinion as to the logic, accuracy and feasibility of his strategies. I will also attempt to evaluate his work on consistency and completeness. Objectively, I found his arguments to be both logical and consistent throughout. I will attempt to focus on the remaining points for evaluation. Hertsgaard lays the foundation for his solutions upfront by stating in paragraph three that restoring the environment could be the biggest economic enterprise of our time, "a huge source of jobs, profits, and poverty alleviation." Up front, the stage is set with an ambitious and to the point statement that gives the reader great promise of things to come within the essay. The "hook" for his audience is set early by setting a stage of doom as he employs fear as a motivational tool when he states that "First, we have no time to lose" in paragraph 5. Overall, a very solid introduction that captures the interest of the reader while introducing the first of three main points to support his essay. Beyond the statement of time however, Hertsgaard offers no additional insight or facts to support his "time based" claim. Hertsgaard's second focal point is poverty. I'll concede that poverty is among the most challenging issues facing the world today. In paragraph six, Hertsgaard establishes that poverty "is central to the problem" and uses sound statistics to make his point. He references Thomas Edison to lend credibility to the statement by paraphrasing "nothing is more certainly written in the book of fate than that the bottom two-thirds of humanity will strive to improve their lot." Hertsgaard does a remarkable job of creating a sense of hope for the reader. The concept of solving world hunger is time-proven and by introducing it as the cure to poverty and global warming leaves the pallet drooling in anticipation of the answers. To his credit, he warns that the solution will challenge our natural surroundings and readily admits that solving poverty will be difficult. While the tag line is impressive, the reality is that Hertsgaard only offers hope to an age old dilemma and fails to recognize the unfeasibility of his ambition. Expanding basic infrastructures in developing countries alone poses great challenges. Slow technological advancements, poor industrial development and substandard education systems compound developmental problems for most of world leaving little hope that environmental conservation will rank among top priorities for their foreseeable future. In paragraph 7, Hertsgaard states that most of the technologies needed to "chart a new course" already exist. It is here that he stresses the importance of efficiency. He does a good job of citing resources to support his position and is convincing in his statement that we should use basic resources more efficiently. Hertsgaard...
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