Environmentalists’ efforts to replace coal and other conventional fuels with alternative energy may result in actually harming the environment and human beings, according to a new paper released by a coalition of primarily evangelical Christians and scientists.

The document, released by the Cornwall Alliance for the Stewardship of Creation at an Oct. 31 briefing on Capitol Hill, points to the following problems in the approach taken to creation care even by some well-intentioned evangelicals:

— Efforts to preserve the environment through centralized government mandates instead of the free-market system can hurt the poor by reducing prosperity and “lead to further environmental degradation;”

— Government regulation of less expensive energy sources, such as coal and natural gas, “may cost more lives through reduced income than they save by avoiding the risk they regulate against,” while crippling businesses.

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