by Kathleen Hartnett White
Texas Public Policy Foundation
June 23, 2014
Current policies to supplant fossil fuels with inferior energy sources need to incorporate a deeper understanding of the transformative role of energy in human society lest they jettison the wellsprings of mankind’s greatest advance. Fossil fuels have made modern living standards possible and vastly improved living conditions across the world. Use of fossil fuels has released whole populations from abject poverty. Virtually everything needed to sustain the lives of individuals – food, heat, clothing, shelter – depends on access to and conversion of energy. The vast human improvements flowing from the Industrial Revolution are still occurring in market driven economies under limited governments which uphold property rights and contractual obligation. Why would societies suppress fossil fuels – a necessary condition of the increasing efficiency inherent in productive economies and continually improved living standards?

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