Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Offshore wind development will create more jobs in VA than uranium mining and coal combined

When it comes to energy policy, governor McDonnell says he favors an 'all of the above' approach. That sounds fair and kind of OK if you don't think about it too much. But think about it. Do you do an 'all of the above' strategy in your own life? How about your investments - do you just buy a little of everything? No, hopefully you do some research or have a good financial adviser to tell you where to invest your limited funds to give you the risk/return balance that is best for you. Generally, you'll invest in companies that are growing, not shrinking.
Now which of these would you invest in: an industry that could add 10,000 jobs, a industry that could add 350 jobs, or an industry that is forecast to continue losing jobs? Would you just do 'all of the above'? Would you just invest in the industry that is shrinking? I wouldn't and I don't think my VA tax dollars should either.
If you find yourself in a political conversation, try bringing up the uranium mining ban and be sure to mention the following facts:
  • The proposed uranium mine? 350 and 325 jobs  respectively.
  • There are only 4,394 coal miners left in VA , a number that has dropped more than 50% since 1993.
    So why are we subsidizing coal to the tune of $44.5 million dollars instead of wind? (That's over $10,000 per miner folks) A better use of that money might be to pay for free job training for coal miners to work in the offshore wind industry - heck it could probably pay for relocation as well if necessary. Just a thought.

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