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9 Jobs Lost For Every 4 Created

I will repeat the title with the full quote:

“Spain’s experience reveals with high confidence, by two different methods, that the U.S. should expect a loss of at least 2.2 jobs on average, or about 9 jobs lost for every 4 created.”

Tony Blankley opines on RealClearPolitics (and elsewhere) that using government funding for creation of “green” jobs will reduce the net number of jobs in the US. If you are not familiar with Mr. Blankley, you can find his editorial work on The Washington Times, hear him occasionally on The MacLaughlin Group and he is the most intelligent voice on the nationally syndicated Left, Right and Center.

I am totally stunned that there are people out there that don’t understand economics. To think that subsidizing one type of job that will replace another job (e.g. install solar panels v. maintain a power plant) is good economic sense.  Even if the job re-training was 100% the very act of taking money out of the tax system to pay for the jobs means that someone out there has less to spend or is made non-competitive by the act.

Please don’t let cap and trade (or carbon trading if you prefer the term) be turned into a jobs creation bill!  It won’t be.

Mr. Blankley does a great job of describing a study that was done in Spain after they had subsidized their “green” jobs efforts.

I mention this in the context of the Obama administration’s assertion that by subsidizing alternative energy sources, it will create 5 million green jobs. To that end, Congress passed in the stimulus bill $110 billion to subsidize and otherwise support such green efforts. And in conceptual support of that argument, the administration has referred to “what’s happening in countries like Spain, Germany and Japan, where they’re making real investments in renewable energy.”


Universidad Rey Juan Carlos, published an authoritative study “of the effects on employment of public aid to renewable energy sources.” The report pointed out: “This study is important for several reasons. First is that the Spanish experience is considered a leading example to be followed by many policy advocates and politicians. This study marks the very first time a critical analysis of the actual performance and impact has been made. Most important, it demonstrates that the Spanish/EU-style ‘green jobs’ agenda now being promoted in the U.S. in fact destroys jobs, detailing this in terms of jobs destroyed per job created.”


Each wind industry job created in Spain required a subsidy of about $1.4 million. Overall, the average subsidy cost for each green job was about $800,000 (571,138 euros). And to create about 50,000 green jobs, Spain lost 110,000 jobs elsewhere in the economy, principally in metallurgy, nonmetallic mining and food processing and in the beverage and tobacco industries.


Each green megawatt brought on line destroyed 5.28 jobs elsewhere in the economy (8.99 by photovoltaics, 4.27 by wind energy and 5.05 by mini-hydropower). The total higher energy cost — the higher cost of renewable energy over the market price of carbon-based energy — between 2000 and 2008 was about $10 billion. Moreover, the report concluded, “These costs do not appear to be unique to Spain’s approach but instead are largely inherent in schemes to promote renewable energy sources.”

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One Response to “9 Jobs Lost For Every 4 Created”

  1. Solar power has the potential to really impact consumer green energy. It does not servicing because there are no moving parts.