NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis

Obama's Green Jobs Fraud Exposed

July 6, 2012

Section 1503 of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act ("the stimulus") granted billions of dollars to the Department of Energy for the purpose of funding projects in renewable energy. This funding, President Obama then claimed, would result in hundreds of thousands of "green-collar" jobs that would serve as the foundation for economic recovery, says Investor's Business Daily.

Three years later, it seems that this money has been altogether wasted, and that the renewable energy revolution has failed to materialize. This is evidenced first by the shoddy performance of these billion-dollar grants in creating jobs.

  • Through the broad stimulus package, the Obama administration awarded $9 billion to the Department of Energy for the creation of these green jobs.
  • According to a report by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, a part of the U.S. Department of Energy, that funding created only 910 direct jobs between 2009 and 2011.
  • Using this figure, American taxpayers paid approximately $9.8 million per job.
  • If we allow for the broad classification of "indirect jobs," the figure increases to 5,510 jobs created at a cost of $1.63 million per job.

Near the end of this administration's first year in office, Vice President Joe Biden promised 722,000 green jobs would be generated by the stimulus. The results, it seems, have fallen far short of this promise.

Meanwhile, the current administration has done all it can to strangle job growth in the oil sector of the economy. By killing the Keystone XL pipeline to deliver oil to American refineries from the oil sands of Alberta, Canada, President Obama demonstrated a severe bias against proven job growth, favoring instead the ineffective vehicles employed by his stimulus package.

  • Mark Ayers, past head of the AFL-CIO Building and Construction Trades Department, told the Huffington Post last November that "the Keystone Pipeline represents the prospect for 20,000 immediate jobs."
  • Further, these positions would be complemented by approximately 500,000 indirect jobs, made available by the economic multiplier effect of the project.
  • Importantly, the Keystone pipeline required no government support (that is, no tax dollars lost).

While campaigning four years ago, then-Senator Obama promised that $150 billion in government spending on renewable energy projects would create 5 million green-collar jobs over 10 years. This seems altogether untrue.

Source: "Obama's Green-Jobs Fraud Exposed," Investor's Business Daily, June 21, 2012.

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