Friday, August 26, 2011

Plastics Industry Edited California Environmental Textbook for High School Students

Hat tip Propublica

This is just wrong

California Watch Plastics industry edited environmental textbook
http://californiawatch.org/environment/plastics-industry-edited-environmental-textbook-12123

[excerpted] Under pressure from the American Chemistry Council, a lobbying group for the plastics industry, schools officials in California edited a new environmental curriculum to include positive messages about plastic shopping bags, interviews and documents show.

The rewritten textbooks and teachers’ guides coincided with a public relations and lobbying effort by the chemistry council to fight proposed plastic bag bans throughout the country. But despite the positive message, activists say there is no debate: Plastic bags kill marine animals, leech toxic chemicals and take an estimated 1,000 years to decompose in landfills.

In 2009, a private consultant hired by California school officials added a new section to the 11th-grade teachers’ edition textbook called “The Advantages of Plastic Shopping Bags.” The title and some of the textbook language were inserted almost verbatim from letters written by the chemistry council.
Although the curriculum includes the environmental hazards of plastic bags, the consultant also added a five-point question to a workbook asking students to list some advantages. According to the teachers’ edition, the correct answer is: “Plastic shopping bags are very convenient to use. They take less energy to manufacture than paper bags, cost less to transport, and can be reused.”

read the entire article at the link above

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