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Debate time for my Bio 270 class

Discussion in 'Off-Topic Discussion' started by ckeeton, Jan 13, 2011.

  1. Jan 13, 2011 at 1:14 PM
    #1
    ckeeton

    ckeeton [OP] Bazinga

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    so we have to have a debate on tuesday on using fake or real trees for christmas.

    she put me on the side in favor of using real trees.
    At this time i can not really think of anything positive for using real trees that have content to it other than they smell good.
    can think of a couple for using fake but not my side to defend haha.

    but some input from yall would be appreciated
    thanks,
    Chris
     
  2. Jan 13, 2011 at 1:21 PM
    #2
    PB65stang

    PB65stang Well-Known Member

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    What about the benefit of less man-made material being produced, hurting the environment when it gets thrown into a landfill?

    Your real trees also do a lot to clean the air while they're being grown.
     
  3. Jan 13, 2011 at 1:24 PM
    #3
    ckeeton

    ckeeton [OP] Bazinga

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    your first point meaning the damage when throwing real trees into a landfill?

    and good point on the second, for some reason that did not come to mind at all haha
     
  4. Jan 13, 2011 at 1:26 PM
    #4
    mastaqb

    mastaqb New Member

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  5. Jan 13, 2011 at 1:26 PM
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    DOERanger

    DOERanger Well-Known Member

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    No Mudflaps, Fog lights on all the time, Map light/Dome light mod, Door sill protectors, In-channel window guards, Re-badged and sock-monkeyed,many more to come.
    Also most man made materials such as plastics use petroleum in the manufacturing process. Less petroleum use, better for the environment.
     
  6. Jan 13, 2011 at 1:29 PM
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    ckeeton

    ckeeton [OP] Bazinga

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    what i've been reading says that alot of the fake needles use things that contain lead, and some trees now have warning labels on them saying to keep kids away from it and if you touch the tree to wash your hands before you do anything else.

    http://www.science20.com/science_motherhood/great_debate_real_vs_artificial_christmas_trees

    check 6th paragraph
     
  7. Jan 13, 2011 at 1:29 PM
    #7
    ckeeton

    ckeeton [OP] Bazinga

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  8. Jan 13, 2011 at 1:32 PM
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    PB65stang

    PB65stang Well-Known Member

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    Should have clarified...I meant that the plastic trees will harm the environment when thrown away.
     
  9. Jan 13, 2011 at 1:36 PM
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    ckeeton

    ckeeton [OP] Bazinga

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    oh okay yeah that would def not do any good throwing those out.

    but are the fake ones not Recyclable once they have been used for their life?
     
  10. Jan 13, 2011 at 1:50 PM
    #10
    Maximus Gradient

    Maximus Gradient Well-Known Member

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    Don't forget to take into account the fact that most people who prefer a live tree get a new one EVERY YEAR. Couple this with actually obtaining said tree which involves cutting it down (using a 2-stroke engine), transporting it (gasoline engine), and finally disposing of it (more gasoline, landfill volume being taken up, etc.). Sure, some people will re-plant, burn, etc. but not all have those options. Fake trees produce much less physical waste since most people keep a single tree for many years. And nowadays they can be recycled.

    Hmmm what else....real trees could introduce non-native insect species to certain environments, Hell, real trees might be non-native species themselves depending on where they're grown. Also, Christmas tree farms are like any other farm - they alter massive plots of land for the horticulture of one select plant species (usually not a good thing), use fertilizers that leach into ground water and pollute streams, etc.

    Basically, there's a lot to think about. Yes, manufacturing fake trees is harmful to the environment, but the repeated act of going through a live tree every year is equally, if not more, devastating in my opinion.

    That said, nothing beats a live tree for ambiance and aesthetics! :D
     
  11. Jan 13, 2011 at 2:07 PM
    #11
    ckeeton

    ckeeton [OP] Bazinga

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    haha yeah, see that would all work great but against my side, i have to defend using a real tree is better haha. but yeah they are awesome to have
     
  12. Jan 13, 2011 at 2:15 PM
    #12
    aficianado

    aficianado Well-Known Member

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    back to bone stock.
    real trees are farmed..like corn. so you are not really cutting into a wild supply.
    it creates an industry, jobs, etc.

    real trees can be mulched into useful compost, etc. i have even heard of them being used to generate friendly habitat for lake fish. you sink them for protective structure.

    downside, you cant get a pink real tree like you can with a fake! hahaha. good luck kid.
     
  13. Jan 13, 2011 at 2:18 PM
    #13
    MountainEarth

    MountainEarth Well-Known Member

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    The petroleum angle is hard to argue, because while petroluem may be used in the manufacture of fake trees, trucking in massive amounts of real trees to tree lots in major cities far removed from forests each and every year also burns massive amounts of fossil fuel. The fake tree people likely have an edge here as a fake tree lasts a good 10-20 years or more. No trucking in trees for those people every year.

    That being said, tree lots - if maintained like forest, and sustainably harvested (i.e. selectively logged / thinned) each year provide greenspace / openspace, habitat for wildlife, oxygen, and also help to clean the air. It's to the benefit of every major city to encourage city forests.

    Consider also areas adjacent to national forests ... like the entire Front Range of Colorado ... where Forest Service annually sells many many 1000s of tree cutting permits to the general public. Designated areas of forest are set aside, and permit holders are invited in to cut their own tree with a hand saw and haul it out. This aids in thinning the forest (especially in what is known as the urban / wildland interface where development butts up against forest, significantly increasing the fire risk). Thinning the forest improves forest health, and reduces this fire risk .. a very very good thing all around!

    Also many communities such as ours have post-holiday tree recycling dropoffs. The trees collected are then turned into mulch, which is used in local landscaping and gardening projects, and also bagged and sold with proceeds benefitting local charities, effectively making real trees a "zero waste" option when they don't have to be trucked in and then trucked out to landfills.

    You might also surprise the other side of the debate by arguing for the living real Christmas tree .. a potted tree used one time as a Christmas tree, then planted in the ground come Spring. This is one of the very best environmentally sound options.

    Here is a pic of our "living tree" decorated for Halloween last year. In our case, we do both .. we have a small 4' fake tree for indoor use, and our large tree is living outside in the front yard... :)

    [​IMG]
     
  14. Jan 13, 2011 at 2:50 PM
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    ckeeton

    ckeeton [OP] Bazinga

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    yeah and i know that the soil they use for the tree farms is soil that can not be used by other crops such as corn or food productions. so in allows a green area the only thing bad thing for that is that it takes up farm land.
     
  15. Jan 13, 2011 at 3:00 PM
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    Derpy Derek

    Derpy Derek Derp

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    It's just an American tradition for families to go out every Christmas to cut down their own tree.. It would kill an age old tradition if everyone used plastic trees from Walmart. I tried to make an argument lol.
     
  16. Jan 13, 2011 at 3:05 PM
    #16
    lcogginz

    lcogginz Well-Known Member

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    With real trees, in most cases, you're likely supporting local small businesses and "real" people. With plastic trees you're probably supporting China.

    Also, my husband the fisherman has pointed out that real trees, when dropped into a lake, make most excellent brush piles. :D
     
  17. Jan 13, 2011 at 3:11 PM
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    jandrews

    jandrews Carolina Alliance Southwest Region Ambassador

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  18. Jan 13, 2011 at 3:11 PM
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    oldtacomaguy

    oldtacomaguy four forty four

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    Real tree - about 30 bucks

    Fake tree - about 200 bucks
     
  19. Jan 13, 2011 at 3:46 PM
    #19
    snoope

    snoope Well-Known Member

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    Most TREE farms are FAMILY owned,endorsed by extension services and help throughout a community. More Non-profits help fill their coffers with "REAL" tree sales,keeping those monies within their state....:cool:

    The TRUCKING co$t is MORE for your artificial trees;who brings the plastic pellets to the factory,who brings the finished plastic trees to a warehouse before store ordering and then who tranports such plastic trees to the stores to be sold???:cool:

    Tree farms use ONE truck to transport CUT trees to the retail yard and usually sell a portion of their trees from the farm directly....:cool:

    [ When I bring my grandkids out to pick their REAL TREE...that look on their faces is the same my kids had and the walk through a small country store is pricele$$ plus the girls pick a "Cut-off " branch to Smell on the way home, then decorate with seed & popcorn for the birds on the back porch :cool: ]

    Our town sends the "Chipper" truck out during the 1st week of January and then the "Chips" are either sold or kept at the town recylce yard for residential use..:cool:...Some of the "local" groups will also pick them up for a small fee...then use that money for their non-profits....

    We do have 2 small trees that my wife pampers throught the year BUT our "TREE" will always be fresh cut!!!!
     
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