Friday, November 21, 2008

Will Environmentalists Ultimately Defeat Their Own Cause

A conversation yesterday with a key player in the energy debate in one western state included discussion of a problem that will likely become apparent in the national debate as well: many environmental groups will oppose anything.

It is probably not surprising that environmental groups oppose increased natural gas production in the state in question, though such added production would create jobs in an area that badly needs them. However, the same groups also end up vociferously opposing wind generated energy production when the need to build transmission lines to get the energy to those who use it becomes apparent.

Environmentalists have a reputation for being purists, and purists frequently will turn down good solutions while on a quest for perfect ones that don't exist in the real world. Ultimately, human beings require energy from some source, and none of those sources, including the highly touted alternative ones, are ultimately pristine.

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