The Senator boasts that implementing AB 32 will create new jobs and businesses however California’s industries are struggling and unemployment sits in double digits. Pavley cites 125,000 new jobs as a result of AB 32 yet this represents an extremely small proportion of the unemployed–currently over 2.25 million, according to the Employment Development Department, and that’s just counting those still looking for work.
Many of the jobs Pavley touts are low wage and low skill positions. Implementation of AB32 has already cost the town of McCloud jobs by forcing out a new water bottling plant. That project is not an isolated case. Elsewhere, as the costs of implementation and enforcement is front loaded onto businesses, projects are abandoned and businesses shuttered.
Pavley also mentions that California leads the country in clean energy venture capital funding ($6.5 billion for 2006-2008). While this number seems impressive to the average reader, it actually pales in comparison to the state’s current unemployment insurance fund which has a year end deficit larger than the three years of clean energy venture capital funding.
Under AB 32 companies are forced NOW to address the burdensome regulations soon to be enforced by the state—taking money from real growth and jobs opportunities. The Senator argues in her article that AB32 is now spurring employment and economic growth in the green sector yet refuses to acknowledge that these same regulations are capable of negatively impacting the economy in every other sector. AB 32 is affecting the economy or it’s not. It’s this type of closed minded thinking that is discouraging businesses from expanding or coming to California.
Unfortunately those Californians with families but without jobs are the ones suffering most. In addition to the grave economic concerns associated with Pavley’s approach, most believe AB 32 will have little impact on global greenhouse gas emissions.