Tuesday, October 21, 2008

The Green Economy

From Progress Report:

ENERGY -- CALIFORNIA'S GREEN ECONOMY HAS CREATED 1.5 MILLION JOBS, $45 BILLION: A major new study by economist David Roland-Holst shows that -- contrary to conservative assertions that progressive energy policies would "ravage the countryside" with "huge economic costs" -- a green economy can restore the middle class, lift people out of poverty, and protect the planet. The study, "Energy Efficiency, Innovation, and Job Creation in California," reveals that "California's energy-efficiency policies created nearly 1.5 million jobs from 1977 to 2007, while eliminating fewer than 25,000." This job growth "has contributed approximately $45 billion to the California economy since 1972." Today, California's per-capita electricity demand is 40 percent below the national average. "Consumers were able to reduce energy spending," the study said, and "when consumers shift one dollar of demand from electricity to groceries," they create jobs among retailers and other businesses. The New York Times noted that the study "comes as state and regional initiatives on climate-change policies have been gathering momentum." The Center for American Progress has found that a $100 billion investment in a green economy can create two million new jobs nationwide.