The Green Jobs Illusion

The Urbanophile exposes the lie:

In a very real way here, the shift to green technology has actually accelerated the move of industry offshore. So many people like to talk about “green jobs” saving the economy. But the reverse is likely to be the case. The faster we force a shift to new green tech, the faster our manufacturing base will get shipped offshore. It can be difficult to make the case to shutter a fully depreciated factory with skilled labor and fully understood operational and quality metrics in favor of a new offshore plant. But if you are starting from scratch in any case, China starts to look even more attractive. ...

This is not necessarily to disparage the shift to green tech. But sustainability advocates have to face up to the fact that there are real costs and tradeoffs to be made. Sometimes you can have it all, but much of the time you don’t get to have stricter environmental policies, lower costs and more jobs. There’s a real cost, financial, industrial, and human involved.