Society’s Problems: Part II

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Environmental Problems, Is There a Solution?

Throughout the past years and presents, pollution seems to be incrementing without solution. Many scientists have predicted an end of the world because of these situations. Is there really a no end solution, or can we do something about it?

What is pollution? It is a form of invasion, and it violates property rights. People have tried to research new ways of keeping the pollution to oneself, but the only thing they’ve achieved is use clean burning anthracite coal, instead of the other one with sulfur which is cheaper. They have better use of smoke prevention devices, environmental forensics are in process of being developed, and there is an increased tendency to build factories away from population centers. Still, does this really prohibit even the tiniest amount of pollution? What about noise pollution? What about all the endangered animals? Can we really do something about it?

What if someone owned a forest? Would things change? Let’s take a look at reality right now. There is no clear owner of a forest, so this means incentive exists to wastefulness and overuse. No one can capture the long-term capital value, so everyone races for short-term gain. Picture a hunter for example. Does he have any reason not to overhunt? Is someone stopping him into looking at the future, and think that if he overhunts now there will be no hunting next year? Does a hunter even think that way? No, any animal he doesn’t kill will simply be taken by others. If he ever thought of having a good intention to preserve some animals for the future, he will be frustrated by the predatory behavior of others in search of animals. So, what is a hunter’s logic? Grab everything you can now, when you can.

Now, take Indians for example, they assigned fishing rights, in this way they had an incentive not to over fish. They also assigned hunting rights, so they wouldn’t overhunt. You see, without these property rights not even the minimum will be achieved.

The outdoor writer Ted Williams said: “Over the past 25 years, Shoshones and Apaches equipped with snowmobiles, ATV’s, and high-powered rifles, have virtually wiped out elk, deer, moose, and bighorns on the 2.2 million acre Wind River Reservation in Wyoming”.

What about paper and plastic? What if trucks and dump sites were all private? Then, companies would have to charge appropriate fees to compensate for damage done by plastic. This means that the disposing of plastic will now cost more to the consumer, and this would make the consumer have an incentive to avoid plastic.

So, is private property the solution? Well, with private property a lot of damage would be solved, so, I believe it is a very good solution.

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