Treaty-chasing is a futile waste of time and resources – the search for clean energy begins at home
Environmental degradation has one cause above all others: the propensity of human beings to take the benefit and leave the costs to someone else, preferably someone far away in space or time, whose protests can be safely ignored. The solution is to give space to the rival tendency in human nature, which is to take charge of costs, when the costs affect one’s home. So my book Green Philosophy is an exploration of the motive I call “oikophilia”, the love of home. The propensity for settlement and stewardship is at the heart of conservative philosophy, I argue, and ought to be at the heart of Conservative politics, too.
But what about climate change? This question is the first I am asked by all those on the left to whom I try to explain my views, and it is a fair question. Here is a problem that cannot be solved by local action. There is nothing I and my neighbours, or even I and my nation, can do to rectify a problem that affects the entire earth and can never be cured in some local part of it. Surely, therefore, there is no solution other than a radical change of lifestyle, imposed by international treaty and enforced across the globe?
A very nice presentation of a conservative’s concerns – without totally denigrating anyone else’s. And the final conclusion – find innovative ways to create clean energy in order to move away from fossil fuels – is certainly something many on the liberal side could agree with also.
I’d rather have a discussion on the best approaches to developing clean energy – I like space-based solar – than our current condition where a large fraction of the population simply do not want to have any discussion at all.
As I have said, no matter how much liberals feel they have the best ideas, without conservatives as part of the conversation, they can never know.
I do know that we will not solve the problems we face without both sides being a part. This article is a nice start.