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Clean energy grows economy faster than traditional sources

Clean energy grows economy faster than traditional sourcesNew report unveiled at state public utilities commission forum:SAN FRANCISCO, As the state grapples with a multibillion dollar deficit, a

new study by researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, to be

released today examines the economic impacts of different energy pathways

for California and finds that continuing on a business-as-usual energy path

risks greater economic insecurity, while aggressive acceleration of clean

energy assures faster and more sustained economic growth. Relying on

renewable sources for 50 percent of California's electric power, combined

with increasing energy efficiency by 1.5 percent a year will generate half

a million new jobswith over $100 billion in cumulative payrolls over the

next 40 years, according to the study."Energy Pathways for the California Economy" is authored by UC Berkeley

professor David Roland-Holst and his team of researchers from the

Department of Agricultural & Resource Economics, and funded by Next 10, a

nonpartisan nonprofit organization. This study evaluates the state's energy

demand and supply horizons, and models the economic impact of accelerating

renewable energy deployment and energy efficiency trends."We don't have to choose between protecting the economy or the

environment," commented Roland-Holst. "Clean energy is more job intensive

than our current energy mix, creates and retains more wealth inside our

state, and reduces our vulnerability to volatile fossil fuel markets. Our

analysis shows that the faster and farther we pursue energy efficiency and

renewables, the more prosperous and secure our economy will be."The report examines California's projected energy demand and supply

horizons and concludes that, if the state continues with business-as-usual,

from electricity to transportation projected energy demand growth will

create greater reliance on fuel imports and therefore greater vulnerability

to price shocks.Using the Berkeley Energy and Resources (BEAR) model, a state-of-the-art,

economy-wide forecasting tool, the study analyzes five new energy scenarios

and tracks complex market interactions across key elements of the

California economy. The five scenarios include: three degrees of Renewable

Portfolio Standards (20 percent, 33 percent, and 50 percent) and new energy

(NE) efficiency (with RPS 50) improvements (1.0 and 1.5 percent annually).Report findings include the following:A dollar saved on traditional energy is a dollar earned by 10-100 times as

many new workers.Renewable fuel generation is more job intensive and less

price volatile than traditional carbon fuel supplies.Employment creation

outweighs employment reduction in every scenario.Over the time period

considered (2008-2050), the clean energy industry increases in-state

employment to about half the size of California's biotech sector, but up to

twice as many additional jobs are created in upstream and downstream

sectors.The most ambitious scenario (50 percent renewable fuels; 1.5

percent efficiency increase) produces the greatest number of net new jobs

and largest payroll dividend -- generating half a million additional jobs

with over $100 billion in cumulative payrolls over 40 years.Compared to

renewable deployment alone (RPS 50), integrating energy efficiency measures

increases statewide job benefits almost tenfold. Employment gains are more

widespread, particularly in construction and services, with the former

responding to new building standards and the latter benefiting from

household expenditure diversion.Renewable energy generates jobs with

relatively high wages and obvious new technology appeal. Even when a

significant portion of green tech manufacturing is outsourced (25 percent

of value is assumed), California still captures significant employment and

payroll benefits from greater renewable deployment.Finally, household

energy efficiency savings translate, via expenditure shift