OP-ED (Townhall): It's Time for Conservatives to Address Environmental Issues

It’s no secret—conservatives have fallen behind on environmental issues for the past decade. In issues like clean energy and conservation, we have lost sight of the legacy of environmental stewardship left to us by conservative trailblazers like Ronald Reagan. 

A report from Duke University in 2014 detailed why many conservatives ignore the issue: solution aversion. 

Solution aversion is the notion that if someone does not like the solution to a problem, they will ignore the problem completely. This can be seen firsthand with conservatives and the environment. Conservatives see green policies as curtailing the rights and values they care about most, like property rights, limited government, and free-market solutions. This is because the environmental movement has failed to acknowledge the importance of these fundamental American values. Far-reaching alarmism promoted by the environmental community has lead to intrusive, anti-business, and big-government proposals that turn conservatives away. 

Benji Backer