Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Human Rights, Science and the Energy Emergency

Dr. Arthur Robinson at HumanEvents.com
Today, we announce that more than 31,000 U.S. scientists -- over 9,000 of whom hold PhD degrees in relevant scientific fields -- have signed a petition to the U.S. government that states:

The people of the United States find themselves in an economic crisis caused, in large part, by energy shortages and rapidly increasing prices for energy.

Yet, the United Nations and other vocal political interests are urging the U.S. to enact new laws that will sharply reduce U.S. energy production and raise energy prices even higher. These interests claim that continued U.S. use of hydrocarbon fuels -- which account for 85% of U.S. energy supplies -- will destroy the Earth’s climate and cause many environmental catastrophes.

What should the U.S government do in response to this situation? The answer is provided by science, by economics, and by the basic principles of human rights. The inalienable rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, in a civilization based upon the achievements of science and technology, include the rights to obtain access to life-giving and life-enhancing technology. This is especially true of the right of access to the most basic of all technologies -- the right of access to energy. This right, we recognize, means we have the right to purchase energy, though the government does not owe us a supply of it. To the contrary, the government owes us an obligation to remove itself as an obstacle to our access to energy unless there is a reason our nation’s security is endangered by it. And there is no such reason.

The so-called “global warming” measures advocated by the UN and others create obstacles, rather than eliminating them.

Our right to access to energy and removal of government obstructions have been significantly abridged.During the past two generations in the U.S., a system of high taxation, extensive regulation, and ubiquitous litigation has arisen that prevents the accumulation of sufficient capital and the exercise of sufficient freedom to build and preserve needed modern technology.

This unfavorable economic environment has caused the transfer of many industries abroad and cessation of growth of many others. Nowhere is this damaging trend more evident than in our energy industries, where lack of industrial progress has left our country dependent upon foreign sources for 30% of the energy required to maintain our current level of prosperity.
etc., etc., and so on and so forth....,

America is a nation of 300 million citizens who consume 25% of the world's daily oil production. In a world populated by 6.7 billion people this means that there are approximately 2 billion who have access to *no* energy at all -- no automobiles, no air conditioners, and very little food.