Technofix or technofumble?

The three types of technofixes that are discussed in LeCain’s readings are the transformation fix, the relocation fix, and the delay fix. The transformation fix is when an industry or specific company uses modern science and technology to turn a polluting byproduct from whatever they are doing and turns it into a usable or saleable product. In Anaconda’s case they used the arsenic to treat the timber for the deep mines to help them last longer. The second technofix is the relocation fix which is the attempt of moving or rebranding the poisonous material in a way that could be sold. The Anaconda relocation technofix was to sell their arsenic as a pesticide to the cotton fields in the south. The extent of the damage of arsenic pesticides is difficult to determine but it does not break down naturally. The third type of technofix is the Delay method. Which basically means the company uses modern technology to capture and store the problem just hoping it goes away before they have to deal with it. The Anaconda solution was to store the poison dust till they closed down. “The Anaconda company left behind more than 250,000 cubic yards of dust captured from the smelter smoke.” (LeCain pg 148) They ignored the problem for so long the Mill creek community had to be evacuated because arsenic was spreading around town.

Even though mining produces waste there are things that minerals, specifically copper, can do that we still rely on heavily. If we produce thing in the future that reduce our dependence on nonrenewable resources then it may be possible in the future to end mining. Lecain seems to think that their can only be winners and losers in the game of environmental fencing. It seems to me a double lose situation if we do not replenish what we deplete. We have to at least try to not be a terrible virus for earth.

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