Owl wrote:Yes, well, suppose this did happen, using a scientific method and an unbiased third party to essentially check up on BLC like a mother barging in to her son's room uninvited at anytime, and if it doesn't meet her standards, he's grounded for life, this will either increase the general stress at Burning Man (stress, actually, is what at least 50% of burners are trying to escape at BM), or cause more people to disregard the state of the playa. Usually, the reason that people leave garbage on the playa is that either they have no room in thier trucks to take it home and/or they are out of garbage space, what I would do is place a closed off dumpster at centercamp and they must get permission to use it. and perhaps use gift economy and give away trash bags at center camp.
stopbmorg wrote:Rodney, I agree with 100% of what you say. But I think there are other problems that justify a deeper look at what goes on at the playa.
The cleanup standard used by BLM, and readily accepted by BM, is hardly scientific beyond the idea that you can get a rough count of square footage of trash over the whole event, on average. That standard is the entire basis for determining "clean" from "dirty". In addition, the transects which are walked and in which garbage is collected (3 transects, picked at random) does not allow for a differentiation between high use areas (center camp, large installations) and low use areas (open playa areas). There is also no differentiation among the types of trash beyond a basic organic/inorganic division. Granted, any trash is bad, but I would propose that 24 inch chunks of vertical rebar, vertical tent/gutter stakes and other nasty pieces of steel would have a greater impact than a bottle cap. Granted, the impact here diverges from just the ecological, to the ecological and the impact to safety of other users.
For example, because the cleanup standard is 2D and not cubic or 3D, the engine block of a small car, like a Dodge Neon, could be left out there after the event and it would, by my rough measurements, fit within the 'trash squares' (wooden measuring templates used by BLM). Under the letter and personally experienced application of the cleanup standard, if the block could be stood on end in the trash square, BM would get a passing grade.
A newer method was proposed using circular 1/10 acre plots to be located randomly within the event boundary, but which would be correlated with high/low use areas. Oddly, although this was being examined and studied as of at least the May 2002 transect walk, nothing has come of it (inquiries to BLM about this have gone unanswered).
Because of the lack of responsiveness to urging to implement a more accountable and more scientific method of determining cleanliness of the playa, I think it is entirely reasonable and proper to involve an un-biased 3rd party in determining the state of the environment, as well as in assessing the actual cleanup, post-event.
bgirl wrote:BLACK ROCK CITY LLC PASSES ANNUAL BLM EVENT CLEAN-UP INSPECTION WITH FLYING COLORS
Burning Man Named Largest ‘Leave No Trace’ Event in the World
bgirl wrote:When you say," Does Burning Man really leave no trace?" ,are you trying to say ,"Do the 30,000 or so people attending the event really clean-up after themselves?"
Me and my friends cleaned-up after ourselves(yes, we carried butt tins )at ALL times,during our stay on the beautiful playa.The people we joined camps with(60-80) cleaned up after themselves,and then some.Before we leave, we always do a good job cleaning-up the surrounding areas of our camp ,as well.Just before we leave, I like to walk out on the desert for a mile or two,sit and meditate for awhile,and on my walk back to the van I like to spend some time picking up any garbage my eyes can spot.I think most people who attend BM do an excellent job of practicing the ," leave no trace," philosophy .
sparks wrote:bgirl wrote:BLACK ROCK CITY LLC PASSES ANNUAL BLM EVENT CLEAN-UP INSPECTION WITH FLYING COLORS
Burning Man Named Largest ‘Leave No Trace’ Event in the World
The main objections I have to using this as conclusive proof are:
1) BLM has a vested interest (>$600,000/year) in making sure Burning Man continues at that location, as opposed to reservation land or other private land
2) It says nothing about the standard to which Burning Man is held with regard to the quality of cleanup. Also, it does not take into account Frog Pond, unless I'm mistaken. Sure, Frog Pond is private property that is leased to Black Rock City, LLC, but does that give them the right to do what they want with the natural resources there? Legally, maybe. Ethically, in my opinion, no.
3) Who developed the cleanup standards? BLM? Please see 1) above. Was the plan ever approved by a qualified, unbiased professional?
Why did the BLM fee go up so much in recent years, if Burning Man is doing such a good job of cleaning up? This isn't a rhetorical question... I'd really like to know. I think the permit fee was MUCH less back in 2000 or so, and was increased as a result of poor cleanup, if I remember correctly... someone please correct me if I'm wrong.
Tancorix wrote:I understand the discussion going on but this is just the e-playa. It currently has a user base of 3000 people and the only "senior" staff I've ever run across here is the wonderful Actiongrl. (No offense to Technopatra, Spanky or the ETF members). By posting all this here in an effort to make change, who are you trying to reach? How are you trying to effect change with a core group of maybe 300-500 users and maybe 150 frequently active posters? Are any of you doing other things besides submitting FOIA requests to push these changes?
I like a good debate but the whole point behind this as I see it is to get the ORG to make the changes you want to see done. Is this really the best forum to make it happen? I'm not passing judgement yet, I'd like to hear a valid response from any of the 3 people / sock puppets / activists involved in this. And I'm sure I'm not alone.
Well, I started this thread to get away from the mud throwing and ranting that was going on in the other threads, in an effort to transition this thing into something resembling a constructive discussion.