“And the judgment is this: that the Light came into the world, but men preferred the darkness, because their deeds were wicked.” – Gospel of John

WASHINGTON — IER President Thomas Pyle issued the following thoughts on the latest encyclical from Pope Francis:

In his previous encyclical, Lumen Fidei, His Holiness noted with consternation that for some, “faith came to be associated with darkness.”

It is all the more ironic that in his most recent encyclical, Laudato Sii, His Holiness himself has explicitly identified the Catholic faith with darkness—literally with the absence of light and energy.

The simple reality is that energy is the essential building block of the modern world. The application of affordable energy makes everything we do—food production, manufacturing, health care, transportation, heating and air conditioning—better.

Affordable energy means that people lead better, healthier, longer lives. Technology, innovation, and creativity mean that we are always getting better at finding and producing the energy we need. It also means that we have plenty of resources—whether natural gas, coal, oil, methane hydrates, or other forms of energy.

The application of technology and innovation coupled with the concern and efforts of individuals also means that we are making constant progress in protecting the environment we all share.

We are glad that His Holiness has joined the conversation. We look forward to his ultimate and inevitable conclusion that there is no limit to human ingenuity and creativity. There is no limit to what we can create or the problems we can solve. We can accomplish much more.

The highest value we have is to protect and improve human life, and as part of that we need to improve the environment in a way that makes sense. That means keep improving technology, keep innovating, and keep government from getting in the way.


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