Why I Left Greenpeace

Why I Left Greenpeace

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In 1971 I helped found an environmental group in the basement of a Unitarian church in Vancouver, Canada. Fifteen years later, it had grown
into an international powerhouse. We were making headlines every month. I was famous.
And then I walked out the door. The mission, once noble, had become corrupted
— political agendas and fear mongering trumped science and truth. Here’s how it happened. When I was studying for my PhD in ecology
at the University of British Columbia, I joined a small activist group called the Don’t Make
a Wave Committee. It was the height of the Cold War; the Vietnam War was raging. I became
radicalized by these realities and by the emerging consciousness of the environment.
The mission of the Don’t Make a Wave Committee was to launch an ocean-going campaign against
US hydrogen bomb testing in Alaska, a symbol of our opposition to nuclear war. As one of
our early meetings was breaking up, someone said, “Peace,” A reply came, “Why don’t we
make it a green peace,” and a new movement was born. Green was for the environment and peace was
for the people. We named our boat “The Greenpeace” and I joined the 12-person crew for a voyage
of protest. We didn’t stop that H-bomb test but it was the last hydrogen bomb the United States ever detonated. We had won a major victory. In 1975, Greenpeace took a sharp turn away
from our anti-nuclear efforts and set out to Save the Whales, sailing the high seas
to confront Russian and Japanese whalers. The footage we shot — young protesters positioned
between harpoons and fleeing whales — was shown on TV around the world. Public donations
poured in. By the early 1980s we were campaigning against toxic waste, air pollution, trophy
hunting, and the live capture of orca whales. But I began to feel uncomfortable with the
course my fellow directors were taking. I found myself the only one of six international
directors with a formal science background. We were now tackling subjects that involved
complex issues of toxicology, chemistry, and human health. You don’t need a PhD in marine
biology to know it’s a good thing to save whales from extinction. But when you’re analyzing which chemicals to ban, you need to know some science. And the first lesson of ecology is
that we are all interconnected. Humans are part of nature, not separate from it. Many
other species, disease agents and their carriers, for example, are our enemies and we have the
moral obligation to protect human beings from these enemies. Biodiversity is not always
our friend. I had noticed something else. As we grew into
an international organization with over $100 million a year coming in, a big change in
attitude had occurred. The “peace” in Greenpeace had faded away. Only the “green” part seemed
to matter now. Humans, to use Greenpeace language, had become “the enemies of the Earth.” Putting
an end to industrial growth and banning many useful technologies and chemicals became common
themes of the movement. Science and logic no longer held sway. Sensationalism, misinformation,
and fear were what we used to promote our campaigns. The final straw came when my fellow directors
decided that we had to work to ban the element chlorine worldwide. They named chlorine “The
Devil’s Element,” as if it were evil. But this was absurd. Adding chlorine to drinking
water was one of the biggest advances in the history of public health. And anyone with
a basic knowledge of chemistry knew that many of our most effective pharmaceuticals had
a chlorine component. Not only that, but if this anti-chlorine campaign
succeeded it wouldn’t be our wealthy donors who would suffer. Wealthy individuals and
countries always find a way around these follies. The ones who suffer are those in developing
countries, people we’re presumably trying to help. For example, Greenpeace has opposed the adoption
of Golden Rice, a genetically modified variety of rice that contains beta carotene. Golden
Rice has the potential to prevent the death of two million of the world’s poorest children every year. But that doesn’t matter to the Greenpeace crowd. GMO’s are bad. So Golden Rice must be bad. Apparently millions of children dying isn’t. This kind of rigid, backward thinking is usually
attributed to the “unenlightened” and “the anti-scientific.” But I’ve discovered, from
the inside out, that it can infect any organization, even those with names as noble sounding…
as Greenpeace. I’m Patrick Moore
for Prager University.

100 comments

  1. When they started to actively and openly destroy gmo crops i had enough donating to greenpeace, i actually cancelled over that i remember. the actual changes in gmo (i have a science degree) are not even as extreme as actual plant species. eg bananas are mostly from one plant now and if we lose it we cant get the same bananas anymore. better to have a diversified plant. breeding tech would actually help plant diversity and help humans outlive any interstellar type reality hopefully.

  2. To start Green Peace is not against Chlorine liquid, they are oppose the security risk of chlorine gas.
    The best way to discredit something is to find a disgruntled member and use them as proof of your point of view. This is why I say secret organizations like the Illuminati or the deep state could never exist, there is alway someone who does not get their way and will expose the secret, it’s simply human nature. Religious people often make up stories of the person who was lost without religion, and once they returned to religion, life for them was great again. For this guy to be with Prager makes his story far less credible. In my opinion.

  3. Drink Roundup. Then I’ll listen to what you say. You claimed it was safe to do so. Let’s see it. Pat Moore would say or do literally anything for $

  4. You are so wrong about CHLORINE….tests and proof are out there about its abrasiveness to people's arteries. Usually this is found out by doing AUTOPSIES. Time and science will tell and eventually prove it's harmfulness to humans.

  5. But what happens with the 2 Mill children you safe from dying every year? Is there a life waiting for them? Schools? Healthcare? Or are they just become fodder for pedos?

  6. Esto es absurdo. Patrick apoya los quimicos, a eso se dedica… es obvio que va a estar en contra de greenpeace. Es cierto que el cloro fue un gran avance para que podamos beber agua, pero es altamente cancerigeno. De hecho hay muchas empresas que venden purificadores de agua que vuelve inocuo al cloro a causa de esto…

  7. Wow, I used to believe all those things are bad. But now it just got me thinking and question more. Thank you Bjorn and Patrick.

  8. First I'd like to say thank you for your cause to protect this beautiful planet and all living species on it your effort still live today by educating people like me to the importance of protecting the planet and its species since my youth as a plumbing engineer who constantly protect the environment I tried to educate to consumer about proper plumbing and efficient heating systems

  9. But..currently humans are the enemy of the earth('s health) and its many species?! I'd say basically Greenpeace had its facts straight.

  10. In America the church is a place for social interaction but in India the church is a place for fake conversions and leftists.how ironinc

  11. Every movement that gains traction will inevitably get run over by people who do not care about said movement, they just want power.

  12. In the first movement they standed a revolution for human benefits. After attaining a goal they wanna do something just to identify them as activists. Come from this extremist to the opposite extremist.

  13. I was a member of Green Peace until they sent me a letter in 2017 calling then presidential hopeful Donald Trump a bigot and a racist, after which I promptly canceled my membership. Not only was it libel–and disrespectful regardless of political orientation–it shows how Green Peace has become a politicized tool of the Left.

    The Sierra Club has also radicalized. They tried to ban all of the trails in my local national forest from mountain bikers. Anecdotally, every time that I've volunteered to do trail maintenance I never encountered a single Sierra Club hiker, 100% of the volunteers are, you guessed it, mountain bikers! We maintain the trails and then they come in with their big budgets and try to commandeer everything.

    California is the same way with "wilderness zones". Legislators and their left-leaning supporters advocate for an create huge swathes of "wilderness" in the open desert, despite never having set foot on any of the once public land that they are restricting. Once declared wilderness, you can't do anything on it, which effectively bars anyone from exploring, camping, or enjoying it.

  14. I started to lean my head like a dog when he started talking about chlorine because if I remember correctly it is mentioned in prop 65 being acknowledged as carcinogenic. Then he is praising gmo rice…. Lost me bro. They can eat more carrots or take a non gmo vitamin.

  15. I'm no anti-environmentalist, but any organization that prioritizes animals or the environment at the cost of humans is no friend of mine.

  16. GREENpeace should support the burning of fossil fuels, as with the recent rise in CO2 levels the earth has got much GREENER! Through 'CO2 fertilization'.

    Here is a NASA study on 'global greening'.

    https://www.nasa.gov/feature/goddard/2016/carbon-dioxide-fertilization-greening-earth

  17. 0:28 how ironic he says it while being paid to read off a script don't get me wrong green peace is not good, but man this guy is a shill and he's spouting a bunch of bs along with it.

  18. We do need to prioritize the environment, humanity has done enough damage and caused enough wildlife suffering

  19. Ban chlorine? Pssh. Our blood balances itself all the time using sodium and chloride ions. We need a minimum of both of those.

  20. thi s is like you die as hero or you live along to become a villian? and I got the dark knight movie, I just thought it was a kewl saying and that was it, if you learn a lot from history, there are people who thought they were good people in the begining and the became the villian…and no better of example of stalin and Hilter, Hilter won the damn nobel peace prize, and it was called the" new Germany" and look what happend, he became a little bitch and fuckn asshole, I hope he is burning in hell….

  21. There were a lot of good precepts and principles in Sea Shepherd and Greenpeace. I guess most commenters need to vilify all or nothing

  22. This is so sad… I bet most people here in Brazil aren't even aware of what greenpeace represent now

  23. Environmentalism, feminism, socialism, liberalism have all outlived their initial purpose in the Western world – hence “to be scrapped” the sooner the better !

  24. What i'm taking away from this is that even noble organizations can too easily turn into "cults". That is definitely what is happening to today with "progressives". An older straight white male is known as a "Nazi, homophobic, racist dirty piece of shit" nowadays and "we need open borders" etc etc. How can anyone wonder why Trump was elected instead of a person that panders to the above said movement? thank you.

  25. And don't start with signing for a Greenpeace campaign and finishing suscribed on a political party without knowledge.

  26. But if gmo is as bad as they say people eating that rice would still die..just a slower and more painful death… I am not sure I could ever be ok with that.

  27. 2:56 yes I’m sick and tired of people saying humans suck and act like nature is a ferngully paradise that needs saving from the evil of man, we are part of nature and we need to take care of it.

  28. I quit Greenpeace because they were utterly silent over the destruction of North Sea fisheries. I joined UKIP because they weren't.

  29. Am I the only one who is conservative supper right leaning, who actually wants to clean and help the planet I’m not like THE WORLD IS GOING TO END IN 12 YEARS but I feel bad about how the world is being treated like the Amazon rain forest being destroyed for our own being and animals being extinct from our mess idk, personal thought

  30. They stopped H-bomb tests in Alaska and declared victory? The Cannikin tests were conducted as planned and on schedule. Greenpeace filed suits and attempted to block them with a ship. All of which failed. Their problem is they elevated their self-importance in their own eyes. I'm not sure there was ever anything noble about their cause.

  31. So this nowdays imperialist leftism started back in 60s and 70s as minority and now in 2010s its rulling almost everything in goverment. Once we have fixed them out, then this is going to be history.

  32. Fuxxing greenpeace. They're gonna destroy Korea manufacturers.
    They want us to stop our still mills and nuclear power plants.
    These are very important elements for Korea industry.

  33. Thank you Patrick… decades ago when Greenpeace was saving whales and protesting nuclear tests I was pleased to contribute financially and I had made Greenpeace the beneficiary of my Will too, but since they became political I no longer support them. Please keep doing what you do. 😘

  34. The right wing aren’t anti-climate at all. The only difference is, the right chooses to listen to educated climate scientists, instead of unenlightened, uneducated extremists, like Greta Thunberg and these morons from green peace.

  35. They have become a vile aggressive group…..who donates to them now!!! Very sorry that such a good idea has turned bad!!!

  36. @ imfromtambunan 'GLYPHOSATE' ? Attempts to discredit Pat Moore complete failure.
    This is a crap argument, that whole interview was stupid but you wouldn't get that would you. "Here we have some cow dung, farmers spread all over the soil, it won't harm you" . Really? " No it won't " "Ok I have a tub full here would you like to eat it?" FFS.

  37. They have been corrupted by activists . An ex partner of mine was heavily involved with them in the very early nineties and after many months she is with the very top tier , the top tier who were also running the Green Party and she hears them talking in a fashion where everyone must be forced to do this or that and penalised heavily if they did not . She coined the phrase Eco fascists which fit their attitude and actions perfectly .She is a biologist herself and after that day she Left them very quickly and didn't look back .

  38. I don't give a s*** about the left and I don't give a damn on the left the piece of s*** politics in the left is b*****

  39. Explains the radicalization of a once noble organization. Many organizations that I once supported are no longer getting my donations because they have been hijacked by these destructive and ever invasive ideologies.

  40. GMO its No the solution to hunger, it makes THE poor dependent of technology that.they cannot afford.. we need a global TRANSITION like in the movement transition towns

  41. Always the same problem: you start with a very valide, mobile cause but once you solve it, where do you go form that?
    Do you dismiss the organisation you created? You probably should, as the problem is no longer there but you don't, you look for a new cause and that can be tricky.

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