Saturday, January 22, 2011

The Fallacy of "Green Jobs"

Every time I hear a politician talk about government spending to create "green jobs" I can't believe the illogic of the argument:
  1. If "green" energy works, it will take the place of "old" energy - oil, coal, natural gas, etc.
  2. So if green jobs go up, old energy jobs go down.  Best case there is a one-for-one trade off a lost carbon energy job for every green worker who gains a job.
  3. If green energy really is more efficient, it means that the total energy needs of the U.S. will be supported by fewer people, so green energy means a net loss of jobs.
But at the end of the day "green jobs" is just a code word for government spending boondoggles that do nothing to help the employment picture, or create more energy, or bring energy costs down, but some people go along with it because it "sounds good".

1 comment:

The Arthurian said...

I don't think you're supposed to be thinking things through like that!

I like your three points. I might suggest one more: If any manufacturing is needed to support green energy, it will be done in China.