Green Jobs Cost Too Much
Those of you who have been following my picks in CAPS know that for quite some time I have been rather bearish on the whole 'alternative energy' sector. The problem I've always had is one of simple economics. Fossil fuels prevail as our main form of energy generation for one simple reason, they are the most economically effecient. It is my very firmly held belief that alternative sources of energy will begin to prevail only when the economics allow them to.
In the meantime, any talk of so-called 'green' jobs actually aiding the economic recovery, well, I think such claims are very suspect. Allocating resources away from more effecient production (fossil fuels) and toward less effecient production (alternative energy) has an economic cost, and while jobs may be created, more will be lost as a result of the reallocation.
It works not a lot unlike my economic refrigerator.
Turns out, many of these 'green' jobs are costing us $100K each.
President Obama has spent billions on so-called green job programs as part of the economic recovery and plans to spend billions more. He has repeatedly argued this will create good-paying jobs that cannot be outsourced.
But, according to the green groups themselves, these jobs can be highly expensive, often costing well more than $100,000 per job in subsidies and/or tax credits. Just last month, the White House said it was spending $135,294 per job to create 17,000 green jobs. (link)
I guess what really rubs me the wrong way is that the movement toward 'green' jobs is often pitched as a way out of the recession. If my economic refigerator is right, and I think it is, this artifical reallocation will lengthen and deepen the recession instead.
I'm not saying that an argument can't be made that it's worthwhile to make the move, for a lot of reasons, despite the cost to our economy. Such an argument would be, in my mind, valid and legitimate, even though I might not necessarily agree with it.
But 'green' jobs being the way out? I don't see it. Quite simply, they cost too much.
Russell (a.k.a. TMFEldrehad)