U.S. Carbon Emissions are Lower Without the Paris Accords

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Thursday, April 18, 2019


Remember when the world was supposed to end after the Republican-majority Congress cut taxes? Or how about when net neutrality was repealed and everything was supposed to… load… like… this? Last, but certainly not least, the world was supposedly going to end when the U.S. pulled out of the Paris Climate Accord.

Nevertheless, the world is still here, and the United States actually lowered its carbon emissions after not signing onto the Accord. Ironically, the U.S. also saw its renewable energy production reach an all-time high.

Shockingly, the world did not end following these events, as certain politicians (looking at you, AOC) claim that climate change will end life as we know it in as few as 12 years. Given the buzz around the Green New Deal, it is important to view the climate change phenomenon in light of statistical truth rather than just screaming for the elimination of cows and cars.

The reduction in U.S. carbon emissions after pulling out of the Paris Accord can be attributed to the free market dictating competition and innovation in the energy sector. The private sector has led the way in orchestrating the lowering of emissions, whilst the rest of the world catches up.

Responsibility for contribution to the issue of emissions and climate change lies not with the United States, but with the rest of the world. In China, coal production remains the chief output for the energy sector. In other industrializing nations, carbon emissions remain high, specifically in those nations who experience large government intervention in their energy programs. When there is no free market to dictate the innovation of new energy resources, the ways of the old world remain prevalent. Of course, these ways are livelihoods for many in these nations, but without innovation from the private sector, these jobs will begin to die out as the world advances in terms of technology.

Some of this can be seen in the struggle that has endured in parts of the United States, as coal consumption has fallen to its lowest levels since 1979. However, as the level of coal consumption has gone down, the use of natural gas and other resources has risen dramatically.

The United States leads the way in recognizing and lowering carbon emissions, due in large part to the competition brought about via the free market, and not by massive government regulation. The push for lowering carbon emissions will continue to be prominent, with many U.S. lawmakers and celebrities blaming the Trump administration for climate change.

However, the issue is not the United States. The world must recognize that the countries playing “catch up” in terms of sustaining industrialization are generating the highest levels of carbon emissions into the atmosphere. The key to sustaining the planet is held by those who understand and encourage free market policies, not with large governments who constrain the energy consumption of their citizens with barbaric economic policies.

Cody Maggard is a 2018 graduate of Lindsey Wilson College, where he majored in journalism, with minors in history and communication. He will begin law school in August at the University of Kentucky College of Law, where he plans to focus on Constitutional law. He is an advocate of conservative policy from a historical perspective and has an interest in both sports and politics.

The views expressed in this article are the opinion of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Lone Conservative staff.


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About Cody Maggard

Lindsey Wilson College

Cody Maggard is a 2018 graduate of Lindsey Wilson College, where he majored in journalism, with minors in history and communication. He will begin law school in August at the University of Kentucky College of Law, where he plans to focus on Constitutional law. He is an advocate of conservative policy from a historical perspective and has an interest in both sports and politics.

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