New studies released in tandem by Green for All, the Natural Resources Defense Council, the University of Massachusetts at Amherst's Political Economy Research Institute (PERI) and the Center for American Progress declare that moving to a low-carbon economy could bring 300% more jobs in comparison to what fossil fuel powered sectors create.
The reports issued by the aforementioned organizations illustrate the economic, environmental and social impacts of investing about $150 billion per year (funding from federal stimulus packages, as well as the proposals from the Waxman-Markey climate bill) in energy efficiency and clean energy technologies.
Robert Pollin, co-director of PERI and leader of the studies, explains that investing in clean energy for $1 million will generate 16.7 jobs while investing in fossil fuels generates about 5.3 jobs. This means that the country can get about 12 incremental jobs per million in spending by investing in clean energy.
Matthew Wheeland of GreenBiz.com highlights another very important statement that came out of the study:
In addition to creating these new jobs - enough to cut the current unemployment levels in the U.S. by 1 percent, from the current 9.4 percent to 8.4 percent - and trimming the country's carbon footprint, the investment proposed in the reports will also make well paid labor available on a large scale to working-class, blue-collar and less-educated workers.
According to the study, investments should occur in the retrofits, public transit, and the smart grid sectors, from which the biggest and most immediately beneficial segment would be the energy efficiency retrofit for existing buildings.
Read the entire summary of the reports by Matthew Wheeland here.