Government Programs Hurt the Environment

The NCPA has written numerous times about various government agencies and programs that are supposed to protect or promote environmental quality but which result in environmental harm.  For instance:

Federally subsidized flood insurance;

Federal mismanagement of public lands;

Federal  endangered species policies;

Federal promotion of ethanol, wind and solar power;

Federal agriculture subsidies;

And Federal mismanagement of ocean fisheries.

Now, on a single day, I have been given the gift of multiple news reports each detailing new ways the government is hurting the environment while purporting to save it.

On how government ethanol subsidies and mandates  are destroying the prairies.

On how government subsidized and required solar power is competing with wind power to slay birds – combine the two and we really could have the Silent Spring Racheal Carson wrote about, just not from chemicals as she opined.

But Washington is not the sole source of environmental decline, other researchers and government officials think it’s a good idea to kill animals to study (the world’s oldest animal was killed to determine its age) or to save them (slaughtering thousands of chickens in order to save some few of them from the possibility of dying in the chicken fight ring).

Folks, I could make this stuff up, but I don’t have too.  And this is the same government we’re supposed to trust when it says there are no death panels in the health care law?

Comments (17)

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  1. Jerome says:

    You would think that people would get the hint that government intervention is not the answer.

    • JD says:

      Amazingly people still buy into this “government done right argument”, ignoring the fact the government is inherently inefficient.

      • Dewaine says:

        It has a lot to do with people putting a higher premium on equality. It is seeming more reasonable for people to give up freedom and prosperity in an effort to get equal results.

        • JD says:

          We aren’t really doing that. If results are equalizing, then it is because we are tearing everybody down, not lifting people up.

          • Jerome says:

            Instead of helping people reach their full potential, we try to keep the unsuccessful “afloat” while we hinder the successful.

      • Tom says:

        JD, There is one exception to the government innefficiency rule: Governments are highly efficient at causing and then dumping economic hardship and poverty on to the backs of those who place too much trust in governments.

  2. Keith says:

    The ethanol mandate creates so many problems.. I hope the EPA lifts it soon.

    • JD says:

      I wouldn’t hold your breath. The EPA doesn’t loosen its grip.

    • Tom says:

      Man O man, would that ever play heck with the price of moonshine see through whiskey with all those megaproducers having no other market for their products! Wheee-ew. White lightnin’!

  3. MCC says:

    Billions of dollars are spent in these subsidies for reasons that data and research can’t fully support. I don’t get it.

    • JD says:

      Any time the government gets involved, special interests benefit. Now, I’m not saying that there is a conspiracy, but rather that incentives align such that people the rich and powerful benefit at the expense of everybody else.

  4. JD says:

    “And this is the same government we’re supposed to trust when it says there are no death panels in the health care law?”

    I like the cross-reference. The more control we cede to government, the more problems we’ll have.

    • Crawford says:

      I would say that this falls on the private market for not self regulating before the government got involved. But, I’m not so sure that is true.

      • JD says:

        Any time you think that the market isn’t “self-regulating” it is either because there hasn’t been enough time, or far more likely, that there are obscured government policies that hinder efficiency.

  5. VN says:

    So while Harry Reid et al. blabbed on and on about national parks being closed during the government shutdown, I’ve yet to hear them express any outrage over the fact that more land than Yellowstone, the Everglades, and Yosemite put together has been lost under this president thanks to “green” policies.