An energy expert says that the “Green New Deal” proposed on Thursday by Democratic Socialist Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) would actually curb new research and development of future green energy sources, not promote it.
In introducing her plan along with Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.), neither lawmaker could provide Americans with details about how the ‘ambitious’ 10-year plan would achieve key objectives including replacing all fossil fuel electric plants with green energy alternatives, including the shuttering of every nuclear plant in the country (of which there are about 100). Experts believe the entire program — which includes ending all air travel and replacing every single building in the country with one that is more energy efficient — would amount to tens of trillions of dollars, though the freshman New York lawmaker referenced a figure of between $2 trillion and $5.7 trillion, “or more.”
In announcing the plan, Ocasio-Cortez said during a news conference in Washington, D.C., that the plan amounts to an “economic transformation” of the country and includes social justice measure such as a guaranteed federal job with paid vacation for every person in America even if they are “unwilling to work.”
“At the end of the day, this is an investment in our economy that should grow our wealth as a nation,” Ocasio-Cortez said. “So the question isn’t how will we pay for it, but what will we do with our new shared prosperity.”
However, American Enterprise Institute fellow Alex Brill explained last week that no matter the cost, the unintended consequences of the Green New Deal are “the worst imaginable,” according to the Washington Free Beacon.
In an assessment of the plan, Brill noted that financing of it via bureaucratic funding measures may “inhibit clean technology and energy efficiency innovation,” because grants will “inevitably be earmarked for investments that can be defined using only tools and technologies already at hand.”
He noted further that private sector energy development would also be stifled as companies would seek out federal financing rather than private investment for green energy projects. Citing highway spending data from President Barack Obama’s $1 trillion “stimulus” measure in 2009, Brill said that the scheme actually “reduced state spending on highway projects by 81 cents” on the dollar.
Also, Brill noted that most of the government spending would go to districts represented by politically connected Left-wing lawmakers in Congress.
“Some lawmakers will insist on a certain level of investment in solar projects, while others will demand more money for wind turbines or geothermal power,” Brill writes. “The final allocation will depend on the relative clout of the lawmakers and will inefficiently differ from the allocations that consumers and producers would demand.”
“In short, the Green New Deal would be a deficit financed expansion of federal bureaucratic power to dictate investment decisions in one of the most dynamic sectors of the economy,” Brill wrote.
Meanwhile, Sen. John Barrasso (R.-Wyo.) described the Green New Deal as a “raw deal for the taxpayer” that would boost electric bills by as much as $3,800 per year.
“It’s a socialist manifesto that lays out a laundry list of government giveaways, including guaranteed food, housing, college, and economic security even for those who refuse to work,” Barrasso said, the Free Beacon reported. “As Democrats take a hard left turn, this radical proposal would take our growing economy off the cliff and our nation into bankruptcy. It’s the first step down a dark path to socialism.”
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