When Barack Obama talks about creating 5 million "new" green technology jobs in America, the liberal base who attend his rallies just go crazy.
But, if "green" technologies actually replace fossil fuel usage in this country, where are all those "replaced" jobs going to go. The "net" of Obama's energy plan won't actually be an increase of 5 million jobs as he would have you believe and as his adoring crowds dumbly think. A lot of people involved in the production, delivery, sale and usage of fossil fuels will just lose their jobs as new "green" jobs and energy production are being created. For example. If we completely abandon coal as an energy source, where are all coal miners going to go? They already live in some of the most economically depressed parts of this country like Appalachia. They have limited education and skills other than mining. What about those jobs, Mr. Obama? What about all those jobs that are involved in the trucking and rail delivery of coal? Also, where are all those Teamsters and independent truck drivers going to go who drive oil tankers and liquid petroleum trucks? What about those dozen or more people who work at every corner gasoline station in this country? Where are they going to go? Lots of people who work in the coal, natural gas, and petroleum industries will lose their jobs whenever we ultimately move to any real green forms of energy production and usage in America.
Every action has, at its very least, an equal reaction. I don't know what the ratio of jobs gained to jobs lost in moving from a fossil fuel based economy to a green economy but, people will lose jobs; probably at a higher rate than one for one. Obama's promise of 5 million new jobs is not a lie. But, don't even confuse "new" with "more" jobs for America!
Image by Gavatron's photostream on Flickr with Creative Commons Licensing Rights Retained (Click to View Other Works).