It appears that our Earth is warming more quickly and is likely due, in part, to human action. Our climate has always changed and will always continue to change. The key question is: “What is the role of government?” I don’t think it is to try to stop climate change. Government has a proper role in regulating pollution of our common environment. But our air and water have never been perfectly clean. As our society has become more affluent, we have done much to clean up our environment. We still have work to do.
Government’s proper role is to help us adapt to the changes. Increasing the availability and lowering the cost of energy will improve our lives and our health more than government efforts to reduce carbon emissions to try to slow global warming. Taxing energy not only makes it less affordable, but Increasing the flow of money to Washington also has its own negative consequences.
We will be best able to adapt to climate changes if we are economically prosperous. People are more prosperous when energy costs are lower. Energy costs are lower when there is a truly free market in energy. Government policies that force us to be “energy independent” raise energy costs. Government should not prohibit free international trade in energy. We should stop subsidizing all forms of energy – treat them all equally. Government should regulate incrementally to continue to reduce pollution, but not make major changes that dramatically increase the cost of energy or that increase the flow of money to Washington.