The Instigator
Daxitarian
Con (against)
Losing
12 Points
The Contender
zarul
Pro (for)
Winning
16 Points

Recycling paper is a good way to fight climate change.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/16/2007 Category: Politics
Updated: 9 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 1,928 times Debate No: 528
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (9)
Votes (9)

 

Daxitarian

Con

Recycled paper is artificially supported by the government. When this source of paper competes with paper that comes from trees, it pushes the demand for tree farming down. To compensate, tree farmers have to lower prices. This lowers profits margins, and as such, firms leave the industry. Land that was once used to cultivate trees is now turned into farming something else or sold to real estate developers. Hence, there are less trees, all other things being equal, and if trees are important for regulating carbon dioxide, then recycling paper is bad for fighting climate change.

If you have any thoughts or just like to argue for the sake of arguing, let me know.
zarul

Pro

Recycling paper is a good way to fight climate change.

I. The affirmative is wrong in that recycling decreases demand for paper.

1. The demand for paper is constantly rising as the population rises.

2. At worst, reycling would cause no more commercial forests to be planted (and these forests are not that good, as proven later).

3. Because it will end up balancing, recycling is not harming the environment, and this point of the affirmative's is null.

II. Why recycling helps the environment.

1. To begin with, I will say that trees from naturally growing forests are important to the climate whereas those made by companies are not as beneficial.

A. They are made quickly, as to maximize profit, require massive amounts of fertilizer, and will soon be cut down. They also do not manage carbon dioxide as well as other trees since their only purpose is to be made into paper.
B. Because of this, they are only temporarily beneficial to the environment, whereas "virgin trees", or natural forests (or any forest that has been established for awhile) are far more beneficial.
C. Because these forests will not be cut down, they continuously manage carbon dioxide levels.
D. These trees also have spread their roots, and in doing so, can provide more managing of carbon dioxide. As well, this root system helps prevent erosion, and these forests generally have more biodiversity.

So in essence, trees grown by corporations are not grown to help manage carbon dioxide, but to be made into paper. Trees that have been planted otherwise contribute more to the environment.

2. The earth's population is in a state of rapid expansion. This means the consumption of paper will continually rise, and, the amount of land needed for farming rise as well.

A. This necessary increase in farming land will mean that more and more land efficiency will be required.
B. Because much of this growth is less developed countries, there will not be companies planting trees (which obviously are not that useful to the environment anyway).
C. Many native forests will be cut down, and this will increase climate change.

3. This can be prevented by encouraging recycling.

A. The affirmative might object by saying that corporations for planting trees should be made, however...
B. Recycling paper is cheaper than making new paper.
C. These poorer countries would therefore it would be in that countries interests to recycle rather than to engage in a new commercial industry (which again, is not that beneficial in regulating carbon dioxide).
D. Recycling will reduce the amount of native forests cut down (especially in developing countries), and in doing so will help fight climate change.

III. Finally, it should be recognized that in reality, much of the current climate change is occurring in developing countries, not developed ones. The affirmative totally ignores the non-developed world which does not have these industries.

So vote for me. My arguments make more sense, and do not ignore half the world (or even more) as the affirmative does.
Debate Round No. 1
Daxitarian

Con

zarul: "I. The affirmative is wrong in that recycling decreases demand for paper.

1. The demand for paper is constantly rising as the population rises."

me: Notice I said all other things being equal. But I said nothing about whether or not aggregate demand has increased, just that recycling paper lowers it. So even if demand for tree farms was rising, it would have been rising faster if there was no recycled paper.

zarul: "2. At worst, reycling would cause no more commercial forests to be planted (and these forests are not that good, as proven later)."

me; And if you want more trees you would at least want more commercial forests planted. But the downward push on demand for tree farms that recycling causes also has a downward effect on profit margins, and thus leads to less trees.

zarul: "3. Because it will end up balancing, recycling is not harming the environment, and this point of the affirmative's is null."

Reply: What exactly is being balanced? The point I am making is that government interference is unintentionally causing harm.

zarul: "A. They are made quickly, as to maximize profit, require massive amounts of fertilizer, and will soon be cut down. They also do not manage carbon dioxide as well as other trees since their only purpose is to be made into paper."

Reply: And what does what the tree turn into have to do with carbon dioxide? If I planted a tree to cut it down and then changed my mind and thought I just wanted to look at it, that would change how it regulated carbon dioxide in the air? Plus, younger trees would be growing, thus using more energy and carbon dioxide. Older trees quit growing, so would need less carbon dioxide.

zarul: B. Because of this, they are only temporarily beneficial to the environment, whereas "virgin trees", or natural forests (or any forest that has been established for awhile) are far more beneficial.

Reply: No, because the trees are grown again and again. Trees are a renewable resource.

zarul: C. Because these forests will not be cut down, they continuously manage carbon dioxide levels.

Reply: And as said earlier, the trees are continuously grown, so they continuously manage carbon dioxide levels.

zarul: D. These trees also have spread their roots, and in doing so, can provide more managing of carbon dioxide. As well, this root system helps prevent erosion, and these forests generally have more biodiversity.

reply: Trees grown for commercial purposes also have roots. As for soil erosion and tree forests, the topic was climate change.

zarul; 2. The earth's population is in a state of rapid expansion. This means the consumption of paper will continually rise, and, the amount of land needed for farming rise as well.

reply: Yes, and recycling ensures that less of that land will be used for trees. And if less trees means more global warming, then recycling paper is bad for climate change. Plus, there is plenty of land available.

zarul: A. This necessary increase in farming land will mean that more and more land efficiency will be required.

Reply: again, this is about climate change. But if you want more land efficiency, then you would want to develop genetically engineered super-crops, not recycle.

zarul: B. Because much of this growth is less developed countries, there will not be companies planting trees (which obviously are not that useful to the environment anyway).

Reply: You have no reason for believing that commercials trees do nothing for the environment. The whole point of not recycling paper is that more trees will be planted.

zarul: C. Many native forests will be cut down, and this will increase climate change.

Reply: Native forests get cut down because they are usually in the way of building something or planting something else. By not recycling paper, you are encouraging that at least some of that forest that is cut down is grown back.

zarul: "3. This can be prevented by encouraging recycling.

A. The affirmative might object by saying that corporations for planting trees should be made, however...
B. Recycling paper is cheaper than making new paper."

Reply: A: ? Um, what? The whole point of my argument is that by not recycling paper, more corporations would be made for planting trees. B: No, it's not because recycling paper is subsidized by the government, which hides the true cost. If it were cheaper then paper manufactures would quit buying trees and collect the paper from your house itself. The only way recycling a newspaper would be cheaper is if you read the same newspaper everyday. Recycling is a manufacturing process: Trucks have to come by, pick up the paper, treat it with chemicals, and repackage it. This is no more better for the environment then just cutting down trees grown for commercial purposes. The difference is that recycling causes less trees to be planted, which is bad for the climate change.

zarul: C. These poorer countries would therefore it would be in that countries interests to recycle rather than to engage in a new commercial industry (which again, is not that beneficial in regulating carbon dioxide).

Reply: Again, this is about climate change, not third world development, and if it were, ofcourse poorer countries would want to engage in new commercial industry. That's what makes them poor is lack of commercial industry. And you have no reason for believing that tree farm trees do nothing for the environment. Since they are constantly growing, they are using more energy and hence more carbon dioxide.

zarul: D. Recycling will reduce the amount of native forests cut down (especially in developing countries), and in doing so will help fight climate change.

Reply: No, recycling just ensures that less of what is cut down will be grown back. Since profit margins are lower for growing trees, that land will be used to grow something else.

zarul: "III. Finally, it should be recognized that in reality, much of the current climate change is occurring in developing countries, not developed ones. The affirmative totally ignores the non-developed world which does not have these industries.

So vote for me. My arguments make more sense, and do not ignore half the world (or even more) as the affirmative does."

Reply: Climate change is global; it doesn't occur in select countries. That's why Al Gore's book was called EARTH in the Balance, not Vanuatu in the Balance. The environmental movement is what hurts poor countries because it seeks to take away cheap, abundant energy. Why care about respiratory problems that develop in your old age if you live on the brink of starvation and don't live to be that old?

I didn't realize we had to give a reason for people to vote for us (other than our arguments), but mine would have to be: Vote for me, since I don't base my arguments off of pious superstition and ignore the fundamental functioning mechanisms of reality.
zarul

Pro

1. You said all other things being equal, if we follow this we are turning this into a completely hypothetical debate, and means this debate would serve no purpose, it would be totally pointless. You have to consider reality.

The impact of recycling simply is not that great on the tree farming industry. Even recycled paper requires a certain amount of new pulp to be added. As well, not everyone differentiates between reycled and non-recycled paper, and this means that the two are not always competing.

Essentially, your next point is rather similar to the first, but I will say that if recycled paper has an effect on the demand for new paper, it is very small. New paper still greatly outweights old paper in terms of production.

I was saying that with the rising demand, the amount of trees would either slowly grow, or at least stay neutral.

2. Onto the subject of natural forests v. farmed forests.

A. When you cut down a tree, you reduce the amount of carbon dioxide it will be using, and thus it will be less useful to the environment.

B. Older trees do not stop growing unless they are dead. Perhaps you've seen the rings? In any case, an older/larger tree will always use more carbon dioxide than a smaller one, such as the ones coming from a tree farm.

C. Cutting down forests will reduce the amount of carbon dioxide they use, if they are smaller, they do not need as much carbon dioxide as they did when they were bigger, it's pretty simple.

D. Of course commercial trees have roots, but they don't have as developed of a root system. You also didn't deny that farmed trees are less beneficial when it comes to biodiversity and preventing erosion, which takes me to the next point.

E. If more soil erodes, then there will be less trees/plants. Farmed forests do not have the developed root system to prevent this. Erosion leads to less land for plants/trees to grow on, which means the forest will be using up less carbon dioxide (and therefore less beneficial to the environment).

F. Plants dying can cause other animals to die as well. Because all the ecosystems on earth are inter-related, this can have adverse effects on life everywhere, and further climate change.

2. I don't think you understood me, so here I go:

A. Non-developed nations (which contribute more to climate change than developed ones) do not have tree-farming industries, if they need paper, they are going to chop down forests.

B. These countries tend not to replant the forests, and if they do not recycle, they will simply cut down more and more.

C. Recycling is the key to protecting these developed native forests. These forests also have great amounts of plant life that will be lost if the trees are cut down. The loss of all these plants/trees is bad for the environment, and this clear-cutting will create a sort of desert, one where erosion occurs, and it becomes even more difficult to replant.

Continuation of 2. :
Ah yes, a poor country genetically-engineering its crops. That's honestly not going to happen, although it would certainly be a good thing. And even if it did, progress would be too slow.

I never said that commercial forests do nothing for the environment, simply that established forests do more, and you have not been able to refute this.

You say that these forests stand in the way of growth? Than where will these countries plant these commercial forests, if they have not the room for national ones? My entire point is that recycling could preserve these forests, and you haven't proven that this isn't true. You just say that it will happen anyway, but if these countries recycle, they will not need to cut down these old forests. With a little bit of replanting, and a lot of recycling, these important forests can be saved.

3. Recycling is cheaper than manufacturing

A. Recycling is simply cheaper than manufacturing. Commercial forests require massive amounts of fertilizer and water. This costs a great deal of money, as well, these commercial forests must have their wood transported as well, and then processed.

B. [What you say the recycling process is: Recycling is a manufacturing process: Trucks have to come by, pick up the paper, treat it with chemicals, and repackage it]

Indeed, the paper must be picked up, treated, and repackaged. Yet the same steps apply to new paper, the wood must be picked up, treated, and packaged. As well, there are the costs of water, fertilizer, chemicals to kill weeds, etc. In other words, recycling is the cheaper process.

C. As I said earlier, poorer countries will pick the cheaper process, which is recycling. You say in your refutation that poor countries would want to develop industries, but you fail to recognize that recycling IS an industry. And it would be cheaper for the country to establish a recycling industry than a commercial tree growing one, especially since these countries are already very crowded, they need all the efficiency they can get.

D. Also in your refutation, you say that commercial trees use up more carbon dioxide. I have already refuted this, but I shall again.

When cut down, the capacity for these commercial trees to convert carbon dioxide into oxygen is reduced. That means that for a substantial part of the year they will have limited use in regulating carbon dioxide. As well, you claim that they will use up more carbon dioxide as they are growing, but you fail to recognize that old forests are constantly growing as well.

E. (applies to D.) Recycling as I've said, will increase efficiency and preserve old, important forests. Most of these countries don't have room for giant tree farms, and recycling is a must, or we'll see the end of the massive forests which truly regulate carbon dioxide.

Final:

First of all, there's no reason to be rude. And let me say that it's been a good intelligent debate, better than what I see on most sites.

Now onto my points, what I was saying previously was that you were not really calculating the costs of not recycling in other countries, particularly those without commercial tree farming. And as I've already explained, it really isn't that hard for countries to recycle (it's far less demanding than most regualtions placed), recycling IS cheaper than growing new trees. That's what will count in poor countries, the lower cost.

Finally, I included the voting thing because I'm a policy debater, and it's kind of a habit (in my state there's some damn lazy judges, you've got to do their thinking for them). And honestly, I'm not following any sort of pious superstition, I'm looking at reality, I'm looking at the facts.
Debate Round No. 2
Daxitarian

Con

Zarul: 1. You said all other things being equal, if we follow this we are turning this into a completely hypothetical debate, and means this debate would serve no purpose, it would be totally pointless. You have to consider reality.

Reply: No, it's not hypothetical because what is being debated is one variable about demand for trees. If you want more trees, you want the demand for trees to be as high as possible and recycling paper prevents that. What recycling doesn't have an effect on is saving native forests, which I will get to later.

Zarul: As well, not everyone differentiates between reycled and non-recycled paper, and this means that the two are not always competing.

Reply: Go to Office Max, go to the paper section. Recycled on one self, non-recycled on the other. They are competing.

Zarul: "Essentially, your next point is rather similar to the first, but I will say that if recycled paper has an effect on the demand for new paper, it is very small. New paper still greatly outweights old paper in terms of production.

Zarul: A.When you cut down a tree, you reduce the amount of carbon dioxide it will be using, and thus it will be less useful to the environment."

Reply: Yes, and then you plant it again and it grows back.

Zarul: B. Older trees do not stop growing unless they are dead. Perhaps you've seen the rings? In any case, an older/larger tree will always use more carbon dioxide than a smaller one, such as the ones coming from a tree farm.

…if they are smaller, they do not need as much carbon dioxide as they did when they were bigger, it's pretty simple.

Reply: Yes, they keep growing. But what you are leaving out is that they only keep growing in one direction because gravity takes a toll after a while—That's why trees don't grow to be the size of sky scrappers. Trees have an initial growth spurt where they use the most carbon dioxide (growing in two dimensions) and then level off. Old forests really do little for carbon dioxide regulation.
http://www.usatoday.com...

Zarul: D. Of course commercial trees have roots, but they don't have as developed of a root system. You also didn't deny that farmed trees are less beneficial when it comes to biodiversity and preventing erosion, which takes me to the next point.

Reply: 1. Leaves are what regulate carbon dioxide. Photosynthesis separates the carbon from the oxygen and stores the carbon in the wood and roots. 2. The discussion was about climate change, not biodiversity or soil erosion. With breakthroughs in genetic mapping, we don't need nature to be the record keeper of genetics. Erosion is a natural process, but can be accelerated by human interaction. Luckily since about the middle ages we have figured out to reduce this with field rotation, and other modern methods. So for point E: If the land were privately held, the tree farmer would keep it at a minimum to ensure more growth and higher profits.

Zarul: F. Plants dying can cause other animals to die as well. Because all the ecosystems on earth are inter-related, this can have adverse effects on life everywhere, and further climate change.

Reply: How do species going extinct cause climate change? CO2 is the end product of metabolism. If anything, that would lead to less carbon dioxide. Ofcourse I'm not saying we should kill off every animal because they produce C02, just that you need to think through some more about what climate change is.

Zarul: A. Non-developed nations (which contribute more to climate change than developed ones) do not have tree-farming industries, if they need paper, they are going to chop down forests.

Reply: No, the countries that contribute the most to climate change are Australia, the U.S., and the U.K.
http://news.bbc.co.uk...
The number one cause of deforestation is clearing of land for farming. Urban development, mining, oil extraction, and logging are others. Paper has little to do with virgin forests. By making tree farming more profitable, you are encouraging that at least some of that land will be kept for re-growing trees.

Zarul: Ah yes, a poor country genetically-engineering its crops. That's honestly not going to happen, although it would certainly be a good thing. And even if it did, progress would be too slow.

Reply: No, it would most likely be an American or European country that makes the discovery and uses it in lands in other countries. Why this hasn't happened yet is a separate issue dealing with farm welfare in America and Europe.

Zarul: "You say that these forests stand in the way of growth? Than where will these countries plant these commercial forests, if they have not the room for national ones?

Reply: Where the national ones are now. If you are poor and the forest is what stands in your way of planting a crash crop, then you will cut it down. If we didn't recycle paper, trees would be more valuable as a resource, so instead of cutting down the forest to farm wheat, you might be more inclined to cut down the forest and replant it. (ofcourse, there are also some trade policies that affect this, but that is neither here nor their)

Zarul: My entire point is that recycling could preserve these forests, and you haven't proven that this isn't true.

Reply: The burden of proof is on you.

Zarul: You just say that it will happen anyway, but if these countries recycle, they will not need to cut down these old forests. With a little bit of replanting, and a lot of recycling, these important forests can be saved."

Reply: Because it is happening now, and the deforestation has little to do with paper and more to do with clearing land for farming other things. By not recycling paper, you are encouraging the farming of trees over other things.

Zarul: Indeed, the paper must be picked up, treated, and repackaged. Yet the same steps apply to new paper, the wood must be picked up, treated, and packaged. As well, there are the costs of water, fertilizer, chemicals to kill weeds, etc. In other words, recycling is the cheaper process.

Reply: But the new wood is picked up from one centralized location—where it is being farmed. To recycle paper you have to have several trucks drive vast distances to collect what amounts to little paper per unit of distance traveled. If it were so much cheaper to recycle, then private companies would have started doing it a long time ago. Instead the government has to subsidies it (with money taken by force), which hides the true costs. Follow the prices.

Zarul: C. As I said earlier, poorer countries will pick the cheaper process, which is recycling. You say in your refutation that poor countries would want to develop industries, but you fail to recognize that recycling IS an industry. And it would be cheaper for the country to establish a recycling industry than a commercial tree growing one, especially since these countries are already very crowded, they need all the efficiency they can get.

Reply: No they won't. We can afford to waste money on recycling because we are rich. Recycling is not an industry. Here is the fallacy of that argument: Suppose I went around every house on my block and broke a window by throwing a rock through it. The person who fixes windows would get a lot of business. Is this helping the economy? No, because the money people spend on fixing their windows means they have to forgo something else—instead of buying a new window, they could have bought some new pants.So you see recycling as creating jobs, so it must be good for the economy, but you are forgetting that by creating those jobs, you are forgoing spending that money on something.

That's all I could fit in. Well done, good luck to you.
zarul

Pro

I. Rebuttal

At this point, demand (part of point 1.) is essentially pointless, it does nothing for either of our arguments.

What I was saying is that not everyone cares whether their paper is recycled or not. So they aren't always competing.

Apparently you concede my argument that demand for new paper exceeds that of recycled, and adding to that, even recycled paper must be mixed in with some new paper/pulp.

A. http://en.wikipedia.org...

In the "importance" section, there is a sourced claim that says:
"Old growth forests also store large amounts of carbon gas above and below the ground. They collectively represent a significant pool of climate gases such as greenhouse gases. Continued liquidation of these forests may increase the risk of global climate change."

Or in other words, when you cut a tree down, gases are released. Commercial forests become a zero sum for the climate, even if they do use up carbon dioxide, it will eventually be put back in the air. In essence, it means that trees that are planted, simply to be cut down, are worthless when it comes to preventing climate change.

B. Indeed, I concede that trees use most of their carbon dioxide during growth. However, trees do continually use carbon dioxide, and since old trees are (or should) not be cut down, they will not eventually become a zero sum for climate change.

C. Without a good root system, less photosynthesis will occur in the leaves (as there is less water), and there will be less regulation of carbon dioxide.

2. Biodiversity is important in preventing the climate change. Here in the benefits section, "other ecological services"

http://en.wikipedia.org...

It is stated that biodiversity plays a role in regulating the chemistry of the atmosphere and the water supply (which allows other plants to grow, more regulation, etc.), and it states that studies have shown that humans cannot artificially build ecosystems to replace it.

Going on, you say that private ownership would not have erosion. Perhaps in the distant future, but not until the the root system has been well established (which can vary, but we'll be waiting at least half a century). As well, in many places where deforestation is occurring, there isn't a lot of private land ownership, so if these governments were to create the industry, they wouldn't be privately owned.

D. I'll be honest with you, that's a pretty naive view of the worldwide ecosystem. Plants need animals, animals need plants. If all the animals died, what would pollinate the plants, what would spread the seeds, what would provide the natural fertilizer? Animals and plants are inter-related, if you take out one, you take out both. And all of the world's ecosystems are related in the same why, you take out one, it's going to hurt in other places too.

A. http://news.bbc.co.uk......

That website says that the US, UK, and AUS are leading in per capita pollution. My point is that the developing world, as a whole, creates more pollution than the developed world. Your article does not tackle the total quantity issue, just per capita, and you're not considering the fact that there are more people living in developing countries than in developed ones. Per capita pollution is important, but in this case the toal is more important.

You continue on about the wonders of tree farming, which I have already proven is zero sum for preventing climate change, it hurts none, yet it helps none.

B. Countries are not going to magically get good crops from the developed world, developing countries have their own agricultural industries. And if they will do as you say, they will maximize their profit, and giving their engineered crops to developing nations is only going to decrease their profit.

C. Sure, you'll plant trees over the dead ones, ignoring the other environmental costs which do indirectly contribute to climate change. And then you cut them down again, preventing those trees from being of any use in preventing climate change. Oh, and let's totally forget that these countries do not have commercial planting industries.

D. I think it's quite obvious, if we recycle, we won't need to cut down as many trees. Even you support that, in your very first round.

E. http://en.wikipedia.org...

In the "Locations of remaining intact forests" cited section, the massive amounts of these "virgin forests" cut down is revealed. It is highly related to the demand for paper products. By not recycling paper, these countries are submitting to a commercial forest plantation system, which does nothing to prevent climate change.

F. There are private companies that handle recycling, you haven't provided any source that says all recycling is done by the government.

G. Recycling saves 40% of the cost of making new paper, so it's an industry. It may be taking away from parts of the industry, but that's not a big deal, as I'll solidify later. Because recycling saves costs, and is efficient, it will be prefered in places that are poor and need efficiency (the developing world).

II. My Final Case

1. http://en.wikipedia.org...

In the "importance" section, it is stated that old forests have a massive storage of green house gases. Cutting these trees down will further climate change.

A. If old forests have these gases, then new trees would have a lesser amount. When they are cut down, the release of these gases nullifies any good they did to prevent climate change. The negative's argument that commercial forests are useful in preventing climate change is completely null.

B. The only forests which can prevent climate change are those that stay rooted in the ground, permanently uncut. Commercial forests will always be cut down, and so will always be zero sum in preventing climate change.

C. http://en.wikipedia.org...

In the "Locations of remaining intact forests" section, the locations and percentages of old forests left is shown. As it states, the amount of land which these trees are constantly being cut down, in gigantic numbers. This is in part causing climate change.

D. Recycling increases efficiency, the negative has made no attempt to challenge this specifically. Because recycling increases efficiency, we will be able to keep more trees rooted in the ground, and that is good for the environment.

E. Around 70% of these remaining old forests are in developing countries, and could be protected with recycling.

F. Protecting these trees not only directly benefits us by regulating green house gases, but their biodiversity and preventing of erosion indirectly helps prevent catastrophic change.

2. The negative's argument that commercial forests help prevent climate change is wrong, while the affirmative is right.

A. From the earlier article, it is said that cutting down trees releases greenhouse gases. This will further climate change. This totally nullifies the negative point that commercial forests prevent climate change. They will constantly be cut down, constantly grown, and never contribute to slowing climate change.

B. Since all the negative proposes for slowing climate change is the planting of commercial forests, it is clear that the negative does nothing to prevent climate change.

C. I have not been proven wrong by the negative in that recycling increases efficiency. More efficiency means more trees left standing uncut, and less climate change.

Voting

To all the voters, I have proven that commercial forests is zero sum in preventing climate change. In order for trees to prevent climate change, they must stay there uncut. That's as simple as it gets. Recycling gives us more material, and allows us to keep more trees in place.

Finally

Great debate negative! I'm happy this didn't go to ad hitlerum, as internet debates so often do.
Debate Round No. 3
9 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 9 records.
Posted by Tatarize 9 years ago
Tatarize
Clever is clever. They could be good or bad, they are, however, very creative.
Posted by Daxitarian 9 years ago
Daxitarian
Yes, I did bring up the fact that recycling is a manufacturing process.

What we are talking about is recycling paper. Some materials are more efficient to recycle. You know this by following the prices. Aluminum cans are collected by people to make money. Not a lot, but some. That's why you don't see street people digging through the trash to collect paper.
Posted by zarul 9 years ago
zarul
Clever is good though, right? :)
Posted by Tatarize 9 years ago
Tatarize
Cute. As in a little throwaway argument that is, at its core, really clever. For example when Michael Newdow refiled his case against "Under God" in the pledge last year, he added an argument that said that it took an extra two seconds and if you multiply that out per class over the length of the year adding that phrase denies students of several million hours worth of learning time.

That's a cute argument.
Posted by zarul 9 years ago
zarul
Actually Tatarize, the EIA (Energy Information Administration) claims that recycling has a 40% reduction in energy used. Tree growing requires fertilizer (which cannot be produced in quantities without massive amounts of energy) as well as water (which is necessary in massive amounts). There really is no question as to whether it is more efficient or not.

But, I admit, the effect on climate change is less than other things (such as not using coal) we could do.

By the way, what do you mean by "cute argument"?
Posted by Tatarize 9 years ago
Tatarize
Paper = Sequestered CO2.

Honestly, we should put it in a dump and that would sequester CO2 pretty well. It would be a drop in the pan compared to the switching away from some coal. But, it is accurate that paper recycling takes more energy than tree growing does and making more paper takes out more CO2.

Cute argument, correct, but isn't going to do anything in the long run. Solar, wind, nuclear, geothermal, wave, tidal, hydro... anything other than coal would do massive amounts more to prevent climate change than locking up a bit of CO2 in paper production.
Posted by zarul 9 years ago
zarul
The neg. never brought it up, you've got to look at the arguments, not your personal beliefs/knowledge.

Any case, do you have a source for those claims? They're pretty interesting, never heard anything like it.
Posted by renegade_rightie 9 years ago
renegade_rightie
The recycling process is not a good way to fight climate change.

1. Recycling uses large amounts of energy throughout the entire process(read: coal, electricity, etc.), which in turn pollutes.

2. Many recycling processes release toxic organic compounds into the atmosphere.

In terms of energy efficiency and pollution, throwing a piece of paper in the trash is far more environmentally friendly than recycling it.
9 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 9 records.
Vote Placed by Mharman 7 months ago
Mharman
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Vote Placed by tmhustler 7 years ago
tmhustler
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Vote Placed by Randomknowledge 9 years ago
Randomknowledge
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Vote Placed by solo 9 years ago
solo
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Vote Placed by Kingtruffles 9 years ago
Kingtruffles
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Vote Placed by Daxitarian 9 years ago
Daxitarian
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Vote Placed by Tatarize 9 years ago
Tatarize
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Vote Placed by malmal16 9 years ago
malmal16
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Vote Placed by ccdem 9 years ago
ccdem
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