Former White House Economist Admits 'Clean Energy' Firms Don't Create Many Jobs (Updated)
1:01 PM, Apr 5, 2012 • By DANIEL HALPER
Former White House economic adviser Jared Bernstein gave some advice on running "clean energy" firms in Las Vegas today and admitted that these sorts of ventures don't actually create many jobs.
"When I worked for the administration I was very active in the implementation of the Recovery Act," Bernstein told the Vegas crowd. "And one thing we found about clean energy was that if you build a solar plant you are going to hire a lot of people. If you run a solar plant, it doesn't take a ton of people to run some of these plants. The labor-saving technology around the actual production of clean energy is quite intense. So some of these firms don't employ as many people as you might hope."
Of course, the whole point of the stimulus was to create jobs. So the fact that one large element of the package did not do that is troubling.
"[Obama] doesn't have a green energy policy, he has a greenback energy policy," Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich said last week. "He keeps shoveling out greenbacks to failing ideas and propping them up with our tax money and with our children's money."
Bernstein was formerly Biden's chief economist, and the vice president was delegated with the responsibility of overseeing the stimulus.
UPDATE: Bernstein clarifies on his own blog: