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The Detroit News

President Barack Obama is chiding critics of his carbon cap-and-trade proposal to combat global warming for being afraid of a future shaped by new energy technologies and thriving with so-called green jobs.

What those skeptics are really afraid of is a future locked to laws that institutionalize high unemployment, low growth and a lesser standard of living for Americans.

The administration and Democratic leaders in the House are banking passage of cap-and-trade legislation on the promise that the government’s $100 billion investment in green technologies will spin off five million new jobs and hyper-boost the economy.

It’s a tough sell, even to the administration’s congressional supporters.

The House just narrowly passed the measure, with many nervous Democrats deserting their leaders to join Republicans in opposition. That spells trouble for the bill in the Senate, where bipartisan concerns about the impact on the economy are being raised.

Before the country commits to such a radical change, the promises made by supporters must be more carefully examined.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi says her advocacy for cap-and-trade is all about “jobs, jobs, jobs, jobs.” But there’s no evidence that employment has grown anywhere in the world because of energy mandates such as cap-and-trade.

A study released in March by four professors hosted by the University of Illinois casts a great deal of doubt about green job creation.

The academics found claims of green jobs to be unsubstantiated or overstated, and that energy mandates will likely kill more jobs in other industries than they create.

The report also warns that strict government demands for renewable energy sources — the cap-and-trade bill requires 20 percent of energy production be from renewables — and bans on more plentiful and reliable sources such as coal will choke off growth and risk leaving the country in the dark.

There’s also considerable disagreement about the cost of the cap-and-trade bill. The Congressional Budget Office estimates it to be a mere $175 a household. But the conservative Heritage Foundation pegs it at $3,000 per household, which seems more realistic considering the impact on energy and fuel prices.

This is not a job creation bill and it won’t revive the economy.

It’s a bill, according to the professors, that would “lead to restructuring and possibly impoverishing our society.” Senators should acknowledge that possibility before casting their vote.

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One Response to “Editorial: Cap-and-trade bill not likely to deliver promised jobs”
  1. peterdub says:

    Yes Cap and Trade is a roundabout way of doing …not very much
    pro-green or anti-green, it makes no sense.
    Basic Idea — Offsets — Tree Planting — Manufacture Shift — Fair Trade — Surreal Market — Real Market — Allowances: Auctions + Hand-Outs — Allowance Trading — Companies: Business Stability + Business Cost — In Conclusion

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