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WSJ: ‘Green Jobs’ vs. Real Energy Jobs; Is WSJ’s Moore Wrong About Energy Subsidies? September 20, 2011

Posted by Laura Arnold in Uncategorized.
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Dear Readers:

I think it is important to hear from the other side. This is a pre-emptive strike against President Obama by the WSJ who defends BIG OIL and the FOSSIL FUEL industry. President Obama is scheduled to make his address next Thursday night at 7:00 p.m. as I understand. By the way, I think I forgot to post this before the President’s speech. Sorry!

I also don’t know where this guy is getting his facts when he describes the Arlington, VA solar installation on the local library and states: “the solar panels have a life span of no more than 10 to 15 years”. Somebody needs to do a little better fact checking on that statement.

Check out this article I posted from 2009 that has a slightly different take and directly refutes the statement below in this Editorial that “For every two cents of tax subsidies for “Big Oil”, wind and solar get nearly $1.” https://indianadg.wordpress.com/2009/10/29/fossil-fuel-subsidies-more-than-double-those-for-renewables

All I can say is enjoy and watch for President Obama’s speech next week.

Laura Ann Arnold


For every two cents of tax subsidies for ‘Big Oil,’ wind and solar get nearly $1.


President Obama is expected to seek another $250 billion or so in new stimulus funds next week, with plenty of money for clean energy and the creation of so-called green jobs.

Never mind that no one can seem to find many Americans who got green jobs as a result of the original stimulus spending. Consider two stories.

In the 2009 stimulus, the feds gave nearly $3.2 million in green-energy grants to my county of Arlington, Va., with almost $300,000 used to install  solar paneling on the roof of our local library. (Don’t ask why the feds are giving one of the five wealthiest counties in America free money.)

Arlington officials boast the project will save $14,000 in annual electricity  costs, but the solar panels have a life span of no more than 10 to 15 years. So  the feds spent $300,000 to shave at most $150,000 off the net present value of Arlington’s electric bills. Some 3,000 counties across the country received  federal funds for the same kind of negative-return energy conservation  “investments.” This is the kind of “clean energy” program the administration  wants to expand.

Editorial board member Steve Moore on Democrats’ fetish  with green jobs and their attacks on fracking.

Now for a good energy news story. I recently traveled to Wheeling, W.V.,  which is 45 minutes down the road from Pittsburgh along the Ohio River and smack  in the heart of the old Rust Belt. Unlike most places you go to these days, the  town is booming. Defying the national mood, people are optimistic about the  future. Why? It’s what residents are calling the “West Virginia gold rush.”

Except it’s not gold, it’s natural gas. Wheeling sits atop the famous  Marcellus shale formation—one of the biggest treasure troves of natural gas ever  discovered in America. With recent breakthroughs in hydraulic fracturing  technology, that gas can be extracted at very affordable prices. A few years ago  Wheeling farmers and land owners were getting about $50 to $100 an acre for  drilling rights. Now they get up to $3,000, plus monthly royalties. What was  once a dying town now has jobs and new funds for schools and roads, while West  Virginian farmers and land owners are getting rich. The same story of economic  revival can be told about counties in Pennsylvania and Ohio sitting atop the  Marcellus bonanza.

Even the White House acknowledges that the natural gas deposits in the  Midwest and Texas contain potentially 100 years worth of cheap natural gas. Yet  as far as I can tell, President Obama has never even uttered the words  “Marcellus shale” in a major speech. Incredible.

In early August a Department of Energy advisory panel reported that fracking  for natural gas poses risks to air and water quality and so should be subject to tighter regulations—hardly a ringing endorsement. The green movement wants it  stopped completely because of dangers to water, even though continued  technological progress will reduce these risks.


Associated PressPresident Obama talks jobs in Alexandria, Va.

The White House’s hostility toward fossil fuels seems to know no bounds.  Exxon has made some of the largest oil finds in a decade, in the Gulf of Mexico,  and yet the Obama administration is holding up the leases and permitting  process. In North Dakota, an Obama-appointed U.S attorney has brought criminal  charges against seven oil companies (with penalties of up to six months in  prison) for causing the deaths of 28 migratory birds found in oil waste pits.

According to data from the Federal Reserve Board’s Industrial Production  Indexes, the oil and gas industry, which the Obama Energy Department loathes,  has had more growth in output than any other manufacturing industry in the U.S.  from 2005 through 2011. As a reward, the administration is proposing $35 billion  in new taxes on the industry to slow it down. Even if we accept the dubious  White House claim that all the oil and gas tax write-offs are unwarranted  loopholes, a 2011 Congressional Research Service study finds that per unit of  electricity produced, for every two cents of tax subsidy to Big Oil, Big Green  (wind and solar) get closer to $1 in handouts.

“The environmentalists are for any energy source unless it actually works,”  notes Stephen Hayward, an energy expert at the American Enterprise Institute. A  few years ago the Democrats were all in favor of natural gas at least as a  “bridge” energy source. That abruptly changed when the extent of America’s  abundant natural gas resources became fully known and more affordable drilling  techniques opened up a superhighway to energy security. The irony of the green  movement’s reactionary antifracking crusade is that one of the most important developments in cutting U.S. carbon emissions has come from replacing coal-burning fire plants with natural gas.

So we now have a national energy policy directing our resources away from  cheap, efficient and increasingly abundant fuels like coal, oil and natural gas  while we channel billions of tax dollars to 500-year-old energy technologies  like wind power that can’t possibly scale up to power a modern-day industrial  economy. That’s a shame.

Mr. Moore is a member of the Journal’s editorial board.



1. Nick - September 20, 2011

Laura – you are typical of the greenies who are in this as lobbyists only for the money, falsly spinning your crap. If you are going to quote someone, get it right: the quote was “per unit of electricity produced, for every two cents of tax subsidy to Big Oil, Big Green (wind and solar) get closer to $1 in handouts.” The key is PER UNIT OF ELECTRICITY PRODUCED and the quote is correct. You purposely (or ignorantly) left that out, which changed the meaning entirely. Indeed, renewables are about 50 times less efficient in producing usable energy per dollar of tax payer subsidy given; or stated conversely, gas and coal are about 50 times more efficient per dollar of subsidy than renewables. 50 TIMES! Happy Solyndra Day!

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