Green campaigners like to talk about a future with zero fossil fuels.

They also like to, as John Lennon might say, “imagine” a world without nuclear power either.

We had best be careful, however, about rushing into the hell they’d prepare for us.

Senior policy advisor Paul Driessen reminds us at CFACT.,org that, minus these very important energy sources, “there wouldn’t even be any wind turbines or solar panels. Without fossil fuels – or far more nuclear and hydroelectric plants – we couldn’t mine the needed ores, process and smelt them, build and operate foundries, factories, refineries, or cement kilns, or manufacture and assemble turbines and panels. We couldn’t even make machinery to put in factories.”

The prosperity enjoyed by our industrialized, free market society is a relatively new feature in human history.  Today’s well-being should not be taken for granted.

In 1651, Thomas Hobbes described a “condition” where “there is no place for industry, because the fruit thereof is uncertain, and consequently no culture of the earth, no navigation nor the use of commodities that may be imported by sea, no commodious building, no instruments of moving and removing such things as require much force, no knowledge of the face of the earth, no account of time, no arts, no letters, no society, and which is worst of all, continual fear and danger of violent death, and the life of man, solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short.”

Two hundred years ago the vast majority of the world’s population lived in extreme poverty.  Thanks to free markets, industry and, yes, important energy sources like fossil fuels and nuclear power, today only around 10% live in extreme poverty … and the situation is getting better every day.

Must life in the future be “poor, nasty, brutish and short?”

Of course not!

But we had best do all we can to prevent climate campaigners from achieving their goals … or we may just get there.


  • Craig Rucker

    Craig Rucker is a co-founder of CFACT and currently serves as its president.