It’s Earth Day 2018 and environmental activists around the world are twisting themselves in knots so they can pat themselves on the back for being so concerned about our “fragile” planet.
In fact, the earth is not fragile at all. What we know about our solar system is that it is an incredibly violent, dangerous place to be. One look at the thousands of craters on the moon could tell you that.
If the earth were truly “fragile,” it would have been exterminated billions of years ago.
Even life isn’t very fragile. The sad fact is long before man was around, every single species in the history of our planet had gone extinct. Now it may be true that we caused several species to disappear, but the wonderful thing about life on earth is that before you can say “Earth Day,” another species appears to fill the specialized niche that the poor departed creature previously inhabited.
What is fragile on planet earth is human civilization. We’re no more than three weeks away from mass starvation at any time and most of our systems are extremely vulnerable to disruption.
So, instead of preening like a peacock about how great you are at protecting the earth, maybe we should celebrate human civilization — specifically, capitalism, which has created more wealth, raised the standard of living for more people, and is largely responsible for modern society with its flush toilets, electric lights, antibiotics, and thousands of other products and devices that would seem magical to people who lived just 200 years ago.
On Earth Day, according to various advocates, “events are held worldwide to increase awareness and appreciation of the Earth’s natural environment.” As we observe the annual environmental event on Sunday of this week, it might be a good time to appreciate the fact that Americans get most of their plentiful, affordable energy directly from the Earth’s “natural environment” in the form of fossil fuels: coal, natural gas, and petroleum.
It’s largely those energy sources from the natural environment that fuel our vehicles and airplanes; heat, cool, and light our homes and businesses; and power our nation’s factories, and in the process significantly raise our standard of living. Shouldn’t that be part of “increasing our awareness and appreciation of Earth’s natural environment” — to celebrate Mother Earth’s bountiful natural resources in the form of abundant, low-cost fossil fuels?
There was a famous prediction by the Club of Rome in 1972 that we would run out of oil and gas by 1992. Instead, we have more reserves of recoverable oil in 2018 than at any time in the history of the oil industry.
Of course, it’s hard to shake the mantra that fossil fuels are raising the temperature on the planet, but the draconian “solutions” offered to fix the problem would impoverish all of us and take us back to the horse and buggy era.
The shortsightedness of greens in looking to limit fossil fuel would kill billions.
To further appreciate the Earth’s natural environment on Earth Day 2018, we should celebrate the revolutionary extraction technologies of hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling that have allowed us to tap into what were previously inaccessible oceans of natural energy treasures trapped in tight shale rock formations miles below the Earth’s surface. It’s an important point that those shale resources have been part of the Earth’s “natural environment” for hundreds of thousands of years, but have only become usable natural resources in the last decade, because of the human resourcefulness that led to breakthroughs in drilling and extraction technologies.
Therefore, the full awareness and appreciation of Earth’s natural environment really only makes sense as a greater appreciation of the human resourcefulness and human ingenuity that have transformed natural resources like sand into computer chips, and oil and gas trapped in shale rock formations miles below the ground, into useful energy products.
We really are a very clever species, capable of stupendous achievements using our brains and imaginations. So this Earth Day, you might want to pause and give an appreciative nod to the pioneers who make modern life comfortable, fulfilling, and possible.