The ethics of job prospect denial

13th January 2014

As it becomes unsurprisingly fashionable and trendy to generate plenty of oil drilling hate in Otago there are some who claim that there are “ethical issues” in supporting fossil fuel exploration and use.

Leaving aside myriad consistency and hypocrisy issues regarding the fossil fuel consumption involved in making such protests and car ownership amongst protestors, a reasonable question concerns:

How ethical it is, in a regional economy where job prospects are grim, layoffs have been and are promised to continue to be high, and the economy is weak to deny those seeking work and the families that depend on them, at least the potential for work which such prospecting may bring?

Inconvenient as it is, ethics cuts both ways. Net benefit based on the statistical record is a better criterion  for considering the issues than the garnering of political capital .

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