ACTU President, Sharan Burrow and Australian Conservation Foundation executive director Don Henry have been exciting the media this morning with a promise of a green jobs economic bonanza to enrich Australia. They call it a “Green Gold Rush”. They cite a study claiming that Australians would be 10 per cent, or about $153 million, better off over two decades by moving to a cleaner and greener economy.
These two zealots cite how Germany created 25,000 jobs and sustained 116,000 existing jobs by retrofitting some 200,000 apartments from 2002 to 2004. With absolutely no hint of irony — think Peter Garrett and ceiling insulation — they suggest that “Australia could do the same for our own buildings’ trades by focusing economic stimulus on energy-efficient renovations”
Has Don Henry read the Spanish study by Dr. Gabriel Calzada, an economics professor at Juan Carlos University in Madrid, showing that since 2000, Spain spent $774,000 to create each “green job”, including subsidies of more than $1.3 million per wind industry job. It found that creating those jobs resulted in the destruction of nearly 113,000 jobs elsewhere in the economy, or 2.2 jobs destroyed for every “green job” created.
Do they know that the supposed sustainable energy sources are not economically “sustainable”, because they actually consume more wealth than they produce?
In Denmark, a study by the Danish Economic Council found that the highly successful wind-power industry there was hooked on government subsidies and had a net cost effect on the economy, not a benefit. In Germany, their extensive use of green energy in their national electricity grid has come at a huge cost for households and tax payers through extravagant subsidies. .
The naïve idea that putting an arbitrary tax on the cost of carbon and depending on government subsidies like a heroin junkie can stimulate an economy is, well, naïve. What happened to all of Mr Rudd’s thriving green industries in domestic solar power, and wind, when he pulled the plug recently?
Sharan Burrow and Don Henry’s Green Gold Rush reminds me of the Soviet central planning model, where left handed, one size boot factories were very profitable.