The Moral Case for Fossil Fuels

The Moral Case for Fossil Fuels A sure to be controversial defense of the fossil fuel industry Conventional wisdom says fossil fuels are an unsustainable form of energy that is destroying our planet But Alex Epstein shows that if we

  • Title: The Moral Case for Fossil Fuels
  • Author: AlexEpstein
  • ISBN: 9781591847441
  • Page: 128
  • Format: Hardcover
  • The Moral Case for Fossil Fuels

    A sure to be controversial defense of the fossil fuel industry Conventional wisdom says fossil fuels are an unsustainable form of energy that is destroying our planet But Alex Epstein shows that if we look at the big picture, the much hated fossil fuel industry is dramatically improving our planet by making it a far safer and richer place The key difference between a hA sure to be controversial defense of the fossil fuel industry Conventional wisdom says fossil fuels are an unsustainable form of energy that is destroying our planet But Alex Epstein shows that if we look at the big picture, the much hated fossil fuel industry is dramatically improving our planet by making it a far safer and richer place The key difference between a healthy and unhealthy environment, Epstein argues, is development the transformation of nature to meet human needs And the energy required for development is overwhelmingly made possible by the fossil fuel industry, the only way to produce cheap, plentiful, reliable energy on a global scale While acknowledging the challenges of fossil fuels and every form of energy , Epstein argues that the overall benefits, including the largely ignored environmental benefits, are incomparably greater.

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      Published :2018-06-03T23:18:20+00:00

    One thought on “The Moral Case for Fossil Fuels

    1. L.A. Starks

      At the risk of sounding hyperbolic, if you only read one non-fiction book in the next five years, this should be the one.Epstein, an outsider with a background in philosophy, reframes the energy debate in terms of standards of value: the "non-impact" group (traditionally called environmentalists) vs. the group whose highest value is human life, and thus improving human life for all 7+ billion of us on the planet. So, pick your side.He backs his arguments with a wealth of detailed facts, sound lo [...]

    2. Matthew Ciarvella

      I really like reading books that express viewpoints opposed to my own. My hope is that they will contain valuable insight that will cause me to revise my thoughts to form a better opinion.Here's what I learned from this book:Solar and wind are stupid and unreliable and are a waste of time.Using fossil fuels is wonderful!Environmentalists are bad.Catastrophic climate change is a myth.Using fossil fuels is FREEDOM and VERY AMERICAN.Alex Epstein likes Brazilian jujitsu a lot and mentions it on two [...]

    3. Greg

      I'm going to do this review a bit differently. I just started and am in chapter 2, but I'm going to write my impressions along the way because there is a lot of stuff happening. I'll update my star rating as well as I go on.I need to start by saying that Epstein and I actually agree on a few things so far. I do, like he does, believe that the promise of solar and wind are being dramatically overstated and the downsides basically ignored, such as the frightening pollution going on in China in the [...]

    4. Douglas Wilson

      What an outstanding book. I really enjoyed this inversion of all the bromides that the chattering classes think they are supposed to teach the rest of us. First rate book.

    5. Thomas

      If George Orwell's 1984 and Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged could produce offspring, the result would be this book, "The Moral Case for Fossil Fuels." There's lots to criticize about this book, but before I do, I should mention that is does contain some good points, which makes it worth reading. In particular, he describes the positive attributes of coal, oil, and natural gas.What makes coal so attractive? It is plentiful, widely distributed, easy to extract, requires little processing, and easy to tr [...]

    6. Donald Plugge

      It is too bad the topic of energy has been hi-jacked by the black and white when life is actually lived in the silvers, slates and pearly grays. I start my quest by looking at the 5 star and 1 star reviewers. For Epstein's book it was interesting to see only one 1-star review and that person appears to have missed the entire point of the book. From the 5-star side I see a trove of reviewers with phrases like "fact based", "risks and benefits", "mankind", "clarity" and even "parts per million". [...]

    7. Brian

      "The popular climate discussion has the issue backward. It looks at man as a destructive force for climate livability, one who makes the climate dangerous because we use fossil fuels. In fact, the truth is the exact opposite; we don’t take a safe climate and make it dangerous; we take a dangerous climate and make it safe." kindle location 1814"There were no computer problems before computers. And just as we use computers to help solve computer problems, so we can use fossil fuels to help solve [...]

    8. Zachary Slayback

      "Here, in a sentence, is the moral case for fossil fuels, the single thought that can empower us to empower the world: Mankind's use of fossil fuels is supremely virtuous--because human life is the standard of value, and because using fossil fuels transforms our environment to make it wonderful for human life." pg. 209, emphasis addedIf you have ever felt that you wanted to become more informed on the issue of fossil fuels but have been unable to sift through all the (hyperbolic) white noise in [...]

    9. Beth Haynes

      Excellent explanation of why fossil fuels are indispensable to human flourishing.Literately billions of people are fed, housed, and healed because of the cheap, reliable energy provided by fossil fuels. Fossil fuels are the means by which we improve our lives and our environment. For the foreseeable future, alternatives like solar and wind, will only provide a small fraction of the world's energy needs. To deprive ourselves of fossil fuels is to condemn billions to poverty, suffering and even de [...]

    10. Amy

      Why didn't I rate this after I first read it? I can't remember. Maybe I was too busy freaking out at how AWESOME it was! I heard Alex Epstein speak and it really restructured everything I'd heard about fossil fuel. I devoured his book in one sitting, then went back to re-read passages. I like how he focuses on the moral case, bringing philosophy in to weigh the cost of climate change. Worth reading, even if you disagree.

    11. Brian

      I rarely gush about a book, but this one is an exception. I, like the author, was raised in an orthodox "green" environment where everything I've ever been taught and every person I've ever known has been unequivocal: climate change is dangerous, humans are causing it, and anything but immediate action against the use of fossil fuels and carbon emissions will damage the future of humanity. I never fully bought the mania around climate change, out of a gut feeling that we weren't being told the c [...]

    12. Malin Friess

      Environmental thought leaders like Paul Ehrlich, Al Gore, and Bill McKibben have tremendous influence but they come to the wrong conclusions with fossil fuels; they exaggerate the negatives and ignore the remarkable advantages. Fossil Fuels (oil, coal, and natural gas) are reliable, cheap, and abundant. Wind and Solar are intermittent and unreliable. A gallon of gasoline has 31,000 calories packed inside! Epstein seeks to prove a moral case can be made for using even more fossil fuels. His book [...]

    13. Jacob O'connor

      It's easy to talk about our beliefs. Living them is a whole other matter. Al Gore whipped the world into a frenzy with An Inconvenient Truth. He then took his private jet back to his 16 room mansion, switched on all the lights, and then set all the oilfields in Kuwait on fire. (I might be mixing him up with someone else on that last one). I'd call that an inconsistent truth. The point is this. How many self-professed environmentalists have taken the steps they've asked the world to take? They pu [...]

    14. Don

      benefits outweigh, 87% use, more use more human progress less deaths, 70’s predictions catastrophic fear of risks no rewards, no temp trend in 100 years, climate deaths fell 98% in 80 years, fear from not thought leaders, better place for human beings, controls may cause early deaths, special metals and resources for solar, most scalable nuclear, 5M deaths 32 to 30K, limiting power death risk for 1.3B, rape earth elements for wind and solar, false attrition fracking backward thinking prejudice [...]

    15. Jeff Yoak

      This book is utterly fantastic even better than I had hoped for. Epstein manages to integrate what holding man's life as a standard of value means with respect to evaluating the risks and benefits of fossil fuel consumption. He makes even more concession of risks than I would have been inclined to do, being less informed. That many of the claims of the environmental movement are motivated by a hatred of human action for its own sake doesn't mean that absolutely none of their claims are true. The [...]

    16. ATJG

      Want to get good and pissed off? Take a deep breath and maunder through the prickly garden of 5-star reviews of this book.

    17. Ben De Bono

      I'm not going to give this book a star rating. I suspect that people will begin to take sides based on the title alone and proceed to endorse or dismiss reviews based on how well the star rating lines up with that initial preconception. It's really a shame that this issue is that knee-jerk for so many. It's vital that we get it right. If someone like Epstein is wrong and we're truly facing catastrophic climate change then we have to take immediate action no matter the ancillary political issues. [...]

    18. Marco den Ouden

      Despite claims from some climate change activists, Alex Epstein is not a climate change denier. He readily acknowledges that the climate has changed in the last century. But the change, he avers, is insignificant and manageable when you look at the big picture. From 1910 to 2010, the average global temperature has increased less than one degree Celsius. The carbon dioxide emissions over this same period increased from around 285 parts per million to 385 parts per million, an increase of 35%. Mos [...]

    19. Donald Owens II

      “Our concern for the future should not be running out of energy resources; it should be running out of the freedom to create energy resources.”Finally! Someone is speaking sense on the energy issue. Epstein argues that nature has already provided us with a cheap, plentiful, and reliable battery to store and utilize energy, in Fossil fuels.He insists that when anyone condemns an action as wrong, we must ask, “by what standard of value?” If your standard of value is human thriving, that wi [...]

    20. Lauren K

      If you are going to read this book, you better think critically. And before starting, you might want to learn some statistics (if you haven’t already). I started this book with an open mind. The first couple of chapters I actually found somewhat interesting. Epstein made me consider some valuable points. Fossil fuels have played a large role in development. Great medical care, travel, worldwide communication, useful technologies, etc, would not be able to continue if we were to just stop using [...]

    21. Ron Housley

      The Moral Case for Fossil Fuels by AlexEpsteinA short book report by Ron HousleyTag Line: Healthy Moral Choice or Dangerous AddictionAlex Epstein has led a campaign to bring calm and levelheaded inquiry to the energy/climate activism of the last 2 decades.We have seen from both sides of the “global warming” controversy an unacceptable excess in propagandizing, and precious little in the way of expository science. All of the panels and debates that I have listened to are one-sided and front l [...]

    22. Terrence Daugherty

      This was an incredible read. Epstein does a fantastic job exposing the misanthropy of the green movement while using airtight logic to make a moral argument for mankind's use of fossil fuels.

    23. David Webber

      As an engineer I can appreciate this book's fresh approach to the issues, particularly looking at the risks versus benefits of energy decisions. It has seemed to me for sometime that many people touting 'climate science' do not make any attempt to speak of the benefits/economics of continuing to use fossil fuels as a energy source while developing other methods, and that they have also underestimated our ability to adapt to climate. I feel that most complex problems have a multi-faceted solution [...]

    24. Nikki

      Overall this book is highly unique and impactful. It delivers a landmark, integrated perspective on energy production and consumption, and is easy and enjoyable to read. I can't give this book 5 stars because it doesn't touch on one major aspect of current climate debate: "ocean acidity". I think given the current energy-environment debate landscape, where ocean acidity publications and predictions garner a great deal of concern, that address of the topic was warranted. I can't help but feel, as [...]

    25. Bpw White

      Either this is a frustratingly misleading book, or it reveals frustrating levels of sensationalism among the media, politicians, and pretty much everyone else. Either way, the experience is frustrating. Assuming his data is correct, his direct and relatively unemotional treatment of the numbers is admirable. That said, trying to get by dismissing solar and wind with the intermittent argument is lazy at best. I mean, batteries? His morality argument boils down to, "let's not waste energy on non f [...]

    26. Evan

      Essential clarity. An indispensable guide to thinking about the issues which stand to affect humanity today and for generations to come. An unapologetic defense of industrial civilization and the means by which it is maintained and continually improved upon.There are reasons why we depend upon oil, coal, natural gas, and not solar and wind. It is because oil, coal and natural gas are dependable sources of energy on the scale required for the best life possible to man today and for the foreseeabl [...]

    27. Chuck Slack

      It is ironic to be reading this book on the day my provincial government released their climate change plan which calls for the eventual phase out of coal-generated electricity. The cheapest electricity in Alberta. This book puts forth some interesting points. I particularly appreciated the premise of how much energy a typical American uses which is 186,000 calories per day which is equivalent to the calories to sustain 93 people! Without affordable energy where would our society be? The goal to [...]

    28. Abhilash Nambiar

      I never thought there was a moral case to be made for fossil fuels. But here it is and it is well done. Who would have thought fossil fuel can facilitate of all things the greening of the earth! What the so called environmental activists want is to freeze things the way they are instead of improving the earth for the sake of mankind. Alex makes the case that Fossil fuels are ethical precisely because it puts mankind first. Highly recommended.

    29. Robert

      This book lays out the philosophic and moral case for Fossil Fuels and why the ideology of "No Human Impact" is anti-human. anti-progress, and anti-life. Unfortunately too few will care to have their opinions challenged.

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