Saturday, February 07, 2009

Q: If wind subsidies are used for economic stimulus, what is the cost of each operating job created by wind farms?
A: Jobs created by wind subsidies cost $9.8 Million each.*

To say that wind subsidies are an economic stimulus because they create jobs is a stretch, at best.
When wind subsidies are justified on grounds of job creation, taxpayers should understand that the cost will be about $9.8 Million for every job created. As between coal, gas, solar and wind power, wind subsidies are by far the least efficient for job creation, the most capital-intensive and labor- extensive of them all.
In fact, as suggested by the data below, when wind replaces other sources of electricity, jobs are lost on balance, not gained.

Jobs created per $billion invested
In energy production: Coal v. Gas v. Solar v. Wind
(Direct, indirect, induced)

Supercritical pulverized coal w/o carbon capture: 806 Operating Jobs (Source: DOE Cost and Performance Baseline for Fossil Fuel Plants (May 2007)

Supercritical pulverized coal w/ carbon capture: 947 Jobs (Source: IBID)

Natural gas combined cycle w/o carbon capture: 387 Jobs (Source: IBID)Natural gas combined cycle w/carbon capture: 321 Jobs

Solar: 210 Jobs (Source JEDI 3)

Wind: 102 Jobs (Source: JEDI 3) [ = $9,803,922/job ]

*Source of job cost estimates: Employment from Power Generation Investment (Dec 2008 Energy Ventures Analysis Inc),Cost and Performance Baseline for Fossil Fuel Plants (May 2007, DOE/NETL-2007/1281) and the JEDI Model (DOE-NETL Website).

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