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Earth News
Sunday, 19 July 2009 02:54
Misplaced Onus of proof

In a case where there is a dangerous intrusion into the environment the onus of proof has to shift from those who argue that the action would be harmful to those who claim that the action would be harmless. In many cases, particularly those related to blasting etc., such as the University of Victoria/Virginia Tech Batholith Seismic Testing there is no way scientists could ever prove that their actions could not cause harm. In that case, the precautionary principle, - an international principle adopted by the global community, even by the United States, should be invoked: where there is an irreversible threat to the environment the lack of full scientific certainty should/shall not be used as a reason to postpone measures to prevent the threat.

Inherently dangerous actions

There are some actions that are inherently dangerous, such as blasting, even though the proponents justify what they are doing by claiming there are "naturally occurring tremors from earthquakes all the time"  This argument is similar to an ad promoting nuclear energy with a picture of the sun, with a caption declaring
Last Updated on Sunday, 19 July 2009 02:54

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