Energy fuels any economy. Access to affordable, abundant, and reliable energy has always been key to America’s dynamism, innovation, and standard of living that is the envy of the world. On a global scale, wealthier is healthier—disease, drudgery, and infant mortality are among the many scourges eroded by abundant energy—and wealthier is cleaner. Abundant energy drives all of this and in the global economy, afforded the U.S. a competitive edge. American policies long recognized and sought to continue these truths.
America possesses the largest combined gas, coal, and oil reserves of any nation in the world. Amid our prosperity, some began disparaging this blessing of resources as a curse to be controlled. Pro-abundance policies gave way to policies seeking to impose scarcity. This is now accelerating and must be stopped and reversed to avoid decline and human suffering, and then replaced with pro-abundance policies to revive America’s economy with a cost-free stimulus that liberates, as opposed to dictates.
With so many taxpayer-financed “busts,” from politicians and bureaucrats pretending to dictate that unproven, unready, and sometimes utterly unrealistic energy sources will work, the coming policy debate must recognize we have the choice of an energy boom.
Facts about energy and the economy:
- Economic downturns are typically preceded by energy price spikes;
- Businesses pass on increased costs, until they no longer can, then they leave;
- Social costs of increased energy costs: job loss, economic slowdowns, higher levels of poverty.
Of all sectors of a free economy, the energy sector should be one of the last to be viewed as and centrally planned as a jobs program, yet that is now the norm; we are told it is a virtue to require more workers per unit of energy, making energy more expensive, and killing far more jobs.
Liberating the energy sources that work, and that are economic—rather than trying to force into the market those that require mandate, coercion and, policies disabling those that work—would create an American economic boom, in two ways:
- Energy production jobs, and those downstream, are economically ‘sustainable’
- More affordable energy helps an economy grow, while more expensive energy stunts growth
North Dakota, where massive recent energy finds and development reside on or below private land—and are therefore free of many restrictions aimed at keeping resources untapped—is a boom state in the current economic downturn.
This could be repeated throughout our energy-rich country, with centuries of resources.
The Impact of EPA’s Regulatory Assault
The Economic and Employment Contributions of Shale Gas in the United States
Institute for Energy Research
American Energy Alliance