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Solar industry now employs twice as many Americans as coal? And this is good?

Written by Paul Homewood

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It is remarkable how often we hear the claim that “the solar industry now employs twice as many Americans as coal”. And, more often than not, as a cause of celebration.

The latest to make the comparison is Josh Bayliss chief executive officer of Virgin Group, in a free advert article in the Telegraph yesterday:

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http://www.telegraph.co.uk/business/2017/06/06/trump-never-grasped-paris-agreement-deal-not-threat/

As we know, many, probably the vast majority, of these jobs are involved with installing solar panels, and therefore will be transitory.

But to the extent that these jobs are permanent, just what does that tell us?

Solar power output in the US was just 9 Mtoe in 2015, 0.4% of total energy consumption. On a pro-rata basis, if the US relied solely on solar, the industry would be employing 650 million people, double the entire population!

In comparison, coal production equated to 455 Mtoe.

I have said this before, but I am at a loss to understand how otherwise intelligent people, like the boss of Virgin, lose all semblance of common sense and reality, whenever climate change is mentioned.

Read more at Not A Lot of People Know That

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Comments (4)

  • Avatar

    Wally

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    Of course coal workers put out of work because of leftist Big Government actions is not considered

    Reply

  • Avatar

    Joseph Toomey

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    Let’s acknowledge that Solar employs more people than coal for electricity generation does. But that stands economic logic on its head. The issue is not how many employed persons per megawatt-hour there are but how many megawatt-hours per employed person. A coal worker accounts for about 144 billion BTUs per year. A solar worker produces just 1.6 billion. So the more renewables we do, the more economic productivity is degraded.

    Productivity is the primary engine of economic growth. Annual productivity growth in the U.S. between 1947 and 2011 was about 2.46% per year. But since 2011, it’s been 0.48% per year. Thank green energy which employs vast throngs of people to produce just a trickle of economic value per person.

    Correspondingly, between 1947 and 2011, real GDP growth was 3.34% per year in the U.S. despite the economy weathering 11 recessions during that time. But not surprisingly, since 2011 and without suffering any recession, real GDP growth has been just 2.06% per year? Again, thank green energy which degrades productivity and thus economic growth by imposing enormous costs on society with comparatively little value in return.

    Reply

  • Avatar

    Joseph Toomey

    |

    Let’s acknowledge that Solar employs more people than coal for electricity generation does. But that stands economic logic on its head. The issue is not how many employed persons per megawatt-hour there are but how many megawatt-hours per employed person. A coal worker accounts for about 144 billion BTUs per year. A solar worker produces just 1.6 billion. So the more renewables we do, the more economic productivity is degraded.

    Productivity is, of course, the primary engine of economic growth. Annual productivity growth in the U.S. between 1947 and 2011 was about 2.46% per year. But since 2011, it’s been 0.48% per year. http://tinyurl.com/y8mh5vby Thank green energy which employs vast throngs of people to produce just a trickle of economic value per person. Correspondingly, between 1947 and 2011, real GDP growth was 3.34% per year in the U.S. despite the economy weathering 11 recessions during that time. But not surprisingly, since 2011 and without suffering any recession, real GDP growth has been just 2.06% per year? http://tinyurl.com/hk6ft88 Again, thank green energy which degrades productivity and thus economic growth by imposing enormous costs on society with comparatively little value in return.

    Reply

  • Avatar

    Joseph Toomey

    |

    Let’s acknowledge that Solar employs more people than coal for electricity generation does. But that stands economic logic on its head. The issue is not how many employed persons per megawatt-hour there are but how many megawatt-hours per employed person. A coal worker accounts for about 144 billion BTUs per year. A solar worker produces just 1.6 billion. So the more renewables we do, the more economic productivity is degraded.

    Productivity is, of course, the primary engine of economic growth. Annual productivity growth in the U.S. between 1947 and 2011 was about 2.46% per year. But since 2011, it’s been 0.48% per year. http://tinyurl.com/y8mh5vby Thank green energy which employs vast throngs of people to produce just a trickle of economic value per person.

    Correspondingly, between 1947 and 2011, real GDP growth was 3.34% per year in the U.S. despite the economy weathering 11 recessions during that time. But not surprisingly, since 2011 and without suffering any recession, real GDP growth has been just 2.06% per year? http://tinyurl.com/hk6ft88 Again, thank green energy which degrades productivity and thus economic growth by imposing enormous costs on society with comparatively little value in return.

    Reply

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