News & Updates - ICYMI: San Francisco Chronicle: Will the Green New Deal work? Ask California

By Robert C. Lapsley

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-New York, and Sen. Ed Markey, D-Mass., have outlined their estimated $93 trillion plan for a Green New Deal. It aims to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions in only a decade by transitioning to renewable energy sources.

Despite its name, the Green New Deal isn’t much of a “deal” at all. Here in California, aspects of the Green New Deal have substantially slowed housing construction, robbing California’s lower- and middle-class families of the wealth accumulation they might achieve through homeownership and forcing many state residents to live farther from work while simultaneously increasing the price they pay for gas and increasing greenhouse gas emissions.

According to data compiled by the California Center for Jobs and the Economy, a 501(c)3 public benefit corporation, the average annual electricity bills for California residents have risen since 2010, when the Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006 was fully implemented, while electricity costs in Texas have gone down. While costs are up, we haven’t seen the types of job growth promised by the deal’s proponents. In fact, most “green jobs” are the result of simply reclassifying existing jobs, such as a bus driver who now drives a bus powered by natural gas.

Don’t make California’s poverty crisis a national crisis. Stop talking about the unrealistic Green New Deal and let’s start talking about a realistic energy future that harnesses everything we have — sun, wind and fuels like natural gas — to provide the most reliable and lowest-cost energy for not just California, but the entire nation.

 

Read the entire Guest Commentary here.

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