Green Economy's a Good Economy in California

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Report Shows California's Investment in Green Boosts Economy
According to a study released by UC Berkeley this Monday, thinking green will work wonders for the state's economy despite global financial difficulties. The report, authored by professor David Roland-Host, noted that in the next 12 years, the state's investment in fighting global warming and improving energy efficiency will create as many as 403,000 jobs and increase household incomes by $48 billion.

The energy efficiency efforts of California began in the 1970s and have already shown a green economy is a good economy. By adopting new building codes and appliance standards, Californians saved $56 billion between 1972 and 2006 and saw 1.5 million related jobs created.

California policymakers are drafting plans to cut the state's emissions back to 1990 levels by 2020 and are also engaging in talks about carbon capping and trading. The state released its own report similar to the Berkeley report this month, also predicting green job and economic growth thanks to plans to curb carbon.

The premise of the Berkeley study is both unique and simple: when people spend less on energy they transfer these dollars to groceries and other goods that boost the overall economy, creating all kinds of jobs.

Roland-Host told the Chronicle,

We find, I think demonstrably, that energy efficiency is good for the economy and good for jobs... even with very modest targets for energy efficiency improvements, California can continue its legacy of sustained job growth.

Photo Credit: Inhabitat

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