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Student Impact Stories

Filip Blaha raising awareness of free-market environmentalism in Central Europe

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Filip Blaha joined Students For Liberty after meeting the team at a partner organization’s summer school in 2020 while still in high school. As one of the youngest team members, he has since gone on to become one of our youngest National Coordinators, leading the Czech team that has recently become SFL’s Group of the Year.

After the pandemic, Filip Blaha and the Czech team successfully revived the branch of Students For Liberty in Brno, the country’s second largest city, by running regular biweekly lectures there. Furthermore, Filip organized major in-person events with international speakers, including a lecture with Bryan Caplan in Brno, and became the main author on the newly created Czech SFL blog, for which he wrote and translated multiple articles, mostly focused on free-market environmentalism.

Free-market environmentalism is Filip’s main field of interest.

“I first learned about the concept of free-market environmentalism in early 2019, a time when the wave of green activism with the goal to combat climate change was at its peak,” he says. “While I shared the concerns of my peers in the green movement, the way they wanted to fight climate change, the way of government regulation and dirigisme, went against everything I believed in. That is what led me to the free-market approach to environmental issues.”

Filip has given talks on the topic of free-market environmentalism on a number of occasions, including at the Czech regional conference, attended by around 150 people in November 2021, a mini conference in the town of Hodonín in the spring of 2022, and for SFL Slovakia in Bratislava. Most recently, Filip was invited to speak on free-market environmentalism at the New Direction conference in Warsaw.

Together with our partner Liberalni institut, he also wrote an assessment of the new Czech government’s environmental policy of the new Czech government, which was republished by a nationwide economic newspaper, e-news.cz, for which Filip is a regular contributor.

Moreover, Filip has now written a 20-page paper on the topic of sustainability and energy solutions for Europe on the 4liberty.eu platform, an outlet supported by the Central European Friedrich Naumann Stiftung, where he discusses how to make the best of the inevitable European Green Deal.

Learning to level with our opponents is generally the way to go, concludes Filip: “Liberals should take an active part in this debate and propose their ideas, but at the same time they should not be dogmatic and, in order to maintain ideological purity, they should not resist promoting ‘key-hole solutions’, which would advance the free society.”

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This piece solely expresses the opinion of the author and not necessarily the organization as a whole. Students For Liberty is committed to facilitating a broad dialogue for liberty, representing a variety of opinions.

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