More jobs and lower electricity costs from carbon standards

Massachusetts-based Synapse Energy Economics, Inc. was the author of a recently published study on the economic impacts of a carbon emission standard similar to that announced recently by President Obama. The study was commissioned by Washington DC based Natural Resources Defense Council and other business and labour groups. The top line will not be new to those who support a GHG emissions reduction program:

the carbon pollution driving climate change can be reined in while creating a net increase of at least 210,000 jobs and modestly reducing [residential] electricity bills, by an average of about $.90 per month.

It is the details that GallonDaily found most interesting and potentially of relevance, with appropriate scaling, to Canada:

  • by far the most jobs from the carbon emission standard will come from energy efficiency initiatives: 236,000 by 2020.
  • fewer jobs will come from gas fired power plants (2000 by 2016 but -1600 by 2020) and wind power (1600 by 2016 but only 100 by 2020).
  • coal fired power plants will lose 22,000 jobs by 2016 but gain 20,000 by 2020. This is because of an expected need for new coal fired power plants outfitted with carbon capture and storage technology.
  • photovoltaics will not contribute significantly to employment growth.

The press release announcing the report is at http://www.nrdc.org/media/2013/130702.asp

The full report is available at http://docs.nrdc.org/energy/files/ene_13070101a.pdf

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