You Cannot Make This Stuff Up: Going green won’t kill jobs during hard times

Russ Steele

Josh Bivens writes in the “Naked” Scientist that conservative claims environmental regulations will worsen unemployment are false. Then he goes on to say that when the economy is struggling, the opposite is true. No really he did HERE.

IN DECEMBER, the Obama administration approved long-overdue environmental regulations requiring US power plants to reduce emissions of mercury, arsenic and other toxic metals. The Mercury and Air Toxics Standards, or air toxics rule, is expected to prevent up to 11,000 premature deaths a year and have many other health benefits. And yet conservative members of Congress oppose it.

Since these regulations have not gone in to effect yet, I am looking for the bodies of the 11,000 that died from mercury poison last year, and the year be for that, and the tens of year before that. I would like to see the 11,000 death certificates from those who died last year of mercury, arsenic and other toxic metals that were living in a 5 mile radius of a coal fired power plant.  That might lend some credibility to the EPA claims.  There are 600 coal fired power plants in the US, that would be about 18 death certificates per plant. Where are they?  Searched the Internet could not locate them.

Bivens blunders on suggesting that a dirty coal plant generates jobs when power companies have to build scrubbers and other control devices, which create jobs  He does note that these new devices will increase the cost of electrical energy. What about the power plants that just decide to close, or the business that decide to move off shore due to increased energy prices. Those jobs are lost for ever.

So when the economy is behaving well, environmental regulatory changes are generally irrelevant to job growth. But when the economy is not functioning well, regulatory changes are very likely to create jobs.

California is one of most highly regulated states in the nation according to surveys, and California has spent billion investing in green technologies, yet we have the second highest unemployment in the nation.  We have more people leaving the state to seek employment than are coming into the state seeking jobs. If green regulations are great job creators we have the mother of all job creators AB-32, the Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006, but it does not seen to be creating any jobs. Since the beginning of the recession California lost 855,200 jobs private sector jobs and 126,300 government jobs. There must be some thing wrong with Josh Bivens economic models, because in the real world regulations are killing California jobs.  


About Russ Steele
Freelance writer and climate change blogger. Russ spent twenty years in the Air Force as a navigator specializing in electronics warfare and digital systems. After his service he was employed for sixteen years as concept developer for TRW, an aerospace and automotive company, and then was CEO of a non-profit Internet provider for 18 months. Russ's articles have appeared in Comstock's Business, Capitol Journal, Trailer Life, Monitoring Times, and Idaho Magazine.

6 Responses to You Cannot Make This Stuff Up: Going green won’t kill jobs during hard times

  1. sean2829 says:

    But it worked so well in Spain, why not California?

  2. D. King says:

    “I would like to see the 11,000 death certificates from those who died last year of mercury, arsenic and other toxic metals…”

    Me too!

    They just throw out fake numbers for their cabal of dummies to repeat.

    Just like this idiot!

  3. Dena says:

    I have seen that people who think they are smart aren’t and people who are smart understand how little they know. We are being ruled by people who think they are smart.

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