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Study finds Fiorinas push to repeal Californias clean energy laws would result in job losses

By Climate Guest Contributor on September 12, 2010 at 8:58 am

"Study finds Fiorinas push to repeal Californias clean energy laws would result in job losses"

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This is a Wonk Room cross-post.

During her debate with Sen. Barbara Boxer last week, GOP Senate nominee Carly Fiorina was repeatedly asked whether she supports Proposition 23, a ballot initiative that would block implementation of AB32, the landmark California climate change law. Fiorina was non-committal at the debate, but two days later released a statement in support of Prop. 23:

Proposition 23 is a band-aid fix and an imperfect solution to addressing our nation’s climate and energy challenges”¦That said, AB 32 is undoubtedly a job killer, and it should be suspended.

However, according to a new study by the Center for Law, Energy, and the Environment at the University of California Berkley Law school, passing Prop. 23, and thus halting the implementation of AB32 in its tracks, would be a step that leads to direct job losses:

Passage of Proposition 23 would result in direct job losses by undermining the 33 percent Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS), which depends on AB 32 authority (the “33% Ref ” scenario). A recent study by the Renewable and Appropriate Energy Laboratory at UC Berkeley shows that suspending the 33 percent RPS would result in a direct loss of jobs, even if the 20 percent RPS remains in effect.

The researchers also refuted the notion that AB32 is causing unemployment in California. “No connection exists between California’s current unemployment rate and AB 32,” said professor Daniel Kammen, one of the report’s co-authors. “In fact, the clean tech sector in California is one of the few areas of sustained growth during the current recession.”

The Prop. 23 campaign is being funded by Texas-based oil giants Valero Energy Corp and Tesoro Corp., who are turning AB32 “into a scapegoat and blaming it for recent job losses caused by the recession.” Koch Industries, one of the biggest polluters in the country, has also thrown its weight behind the Prop. 23 effort. But ceding to the will of these polluters would be highly detrimental to California’s economy, as AB32 has provided myriad benefits:

California’s clean energy sector has continued robust growth despite the economic recession thanks to the Global Warming Solutions Act. Clean energy jobs have grown 10 times faster than the statewide average since 2005, to over 125,000 today. And green jobs grew by 5 percent even when the state experienced an overall job loss of 1 percent between 2007 and 2008.

Fiorina hasn’t always espoused the belief that clean energy legislation is a job killer. In fact, just two years ago she said that a cap-and-trade system “will both create jobs and lower the cost of energy.” But as she’s remade herself into a conservative senate candidate, she has tossed aside quite a few of her prior positions.

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12 Responses to Study finds Fiorinas push to repeal Californias clean energy laws would result in job losses

  1. Can the amount of funding going to Fiorina from Koch funded groups be ascertained? What about the other dirty fossil-fuel company support? How is this being played out in the L.A. Times and other California papers? Are they also bought and paid for like The New York Times?

  2. Colorado Bob says:

    The Prop. 23 campaign brought to you by the same people who brought you the 2001 electrical crisis.

  3. Colorado Bob says:

    Of the 18 penguin species on Earth, 13 are considered either threatened or endangered, with some species on the brink of extinction. Experts gathered last week to discuss the situation at the International Penguin Conference at the New England Aquarium in Boston. [See all 18 penguin species.]

    “I hope that people will hear the word that they are in trouble, the oceans are in trouble,” said Heather Urquhart, manager of the New England Aquarium’s penguin exhibit and organizer of the conference. “I hope we get together and make some changes and hopefully stem the tide of what’s going on with these species.”

    http://www.livescience.com/animals/endangered-penguin-species-risks-conference-100910.html

  4. Chris Winter says:

    That said, AB 32 is undoubtedly a job killer, and it should be suspended.

    As well as being wrong, this makes no sense to me. If she believes AB32 kills jobs, she should push for repeal, not suspension.

    But then, Fiorina’s entire campaign makes no sense to me.

    “Vote for Carly? No, not harly.”

  5. Colorado Bob says:

    Heavy rains in Chad have caused flooding in more than half of the country’s regions, leaving nearly 70,000 homeless and threatening the country’s food security, a UN agency said Saturday.

    http://www.terradaily.com/reports/Nearly_70000_left_homeless_by_Chad_floods_UN_agency_999.html

  6. Colorado Bob says:

    From the same link @ 5 -

    Mexico’s worst ever rainy season to intensify: president
    Mexico City (AFP) Sept 9, 2010 – Mexico said Thursday it is experiencing its worst rainy season on record and the rains are set to intensify, as the latest storms left 10 people dead and affected almost one million people.

  7. DavidCOG says:

    Heads up! Another blog to add to the whackamole list: http://judithcurry.com/

  8. Chris Winter says:

    Judith Curry’s “Welcome to Climate etc.” says “Open minds and critical thinking are required, and stimulating discussion and group learning is expected.”

    The rules of the blog include the statement, “Changing your mind in response to new evidence and arguments is valued here.”

    Those rules are quite sensible, and her blogroll includes Climate Progress, the Green Grok and RealClimate as well as the usual suspects.

    I’m fully aware of Doctor Curry’s past performance. I think we should cut her some slack in this one. Running a blog is apparently a steep learning curve for her; she has trouble even updating links. Let’s hope she lives up to her admirable rules.

  9. Another independent survey may be of interest to readers, as indicated in this report by the California Energy Efficiency Industry Council – http://www.efficiencycouncil.org/whats-new

    “Despite stagnant job growth in California and a 12.3% unemployment rate, the state’s energy efficiency businesses are adding jobs at a rapid pace, according to a recent West coast industry survey commissioned by the California Energy Efficiency Industry Council (Efficiency Council). The energy efficiency industry continues to expand in California, creating jobs and saving energy and dollars for residents and businesses feeling the economic pinch.”

    “The survey of a subset of energy efficiency businesses was conducted by the independent MBL Group, LLC (http://www.mblgroup.com). The survey results demonstrate that the energy efficiency industry is a hub of job growth in California. The efficiency workforce in the state at the businesses surveyed increased by 20% in 2009 compared to 2008, and by another 17% in the first four months of 2010 alone. In addition, the surveyed companies anticipate increasing employment by an additional 49% by the end of 2010. These efficiency businesses expect to hire 20% more employees in California in 2011, indicating that the industry’s remarkable growth is a lasting trend.”

    “Continuing the state’s existing energy and climate policies, such as AB 32, will allow this employment to continue growing.”

    “Several member companies of the Efficiency Council have experienced a doubling or tripling (or more) in size over the past few years as demand for their efficiency services and products continuously increases. Profiles of some of the Efficiency Council member companies who are employing Californians and creating jobs – the “Real People, Real Jobs” of the state’s efficiency industry – can be found at: http://efficiencycouncil.org/realpeoplerealjobs.”

  10. DavidCOG says:

    Chris Winter:

    > …her blogroll includes Climate Progress, the Green Grok and RealClimate as well as the usual suspects.

    It makes no difference that she includes reality-based sites if she is also promoting denialist sites. You don’t inform and clarify the science for the public by giving exposure to disinformers.

    > I’m fully aware of Doctor Curry’s past performance. I think we should cut her some slack in this one.

    I’ll put down good money that she will continue the roll that she has played in comment boxes around the interweb the last year or so, described by Gavin Schmidt: “…a conduit for untrue statements….”

  11. Jim23 says:

    “The Prop. 23 campaign brought to you by the same people who
    brought you the 2001 electrical crisis.”

    Colorado Bob, are you referring to ENRON, the promulgators of the Cap and Trade scheme? The company is no longer operating, but the key players are still around promoting the global warming industry. If so, you might be confused. Thanks for the global WEATHER report.

  12. Bob Doublin says:

    #8 “Open minds and critical thinking” Gee thanks Judy for reminding us about something we never,ever, ever would have thunk of on our own and certainly never,ever,ever done dood it before in our entire very own lives.