Letter: Creating energy jobs

January 2, 2014 

U.S. Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, R-Wash., (In Focus, Dec. 15) wrote that to get jobs we need to reduce regulations, promote economic certainty and champion bipartisan compromise.

Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash, and Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wisc., recently accomplished the latter. I'm grateful for their leadership. I hope that our elected leaders also will work together to solve our greatest crisis: climate change.

The best solution to this challenge, moving to an economy based on renewable energy, is also our best hope for producing and supporting jobs, because renewable energy provides more and better paying jobs than investments in fossil fuels.

Studies by the Department of Energy, and others, show that producing $1 million worth of oil and gas supports only 0.8 full-time jobs.

Compare that to retrofitting buildings for energy efficiency, which produces 7 jobs per $1 million invested, or mass transit services (11 jobs), building the smart grid (4.3), wind (4.6), solar (5.4), or biomass power generation (7.4).

Policies that put a price on carbon pollution would provide powerful incentives that we need to accelerate the transition to this green economy, and would create millions of jobs.

BART PREECS, Walla Walla

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