by: Vien Truong
Dan Walters’ recent column blaming recent gasoline price spikes on California’s clean energy commitments ignores the economic consequences of doing nothing about climate change.
We cannot keep using the same old, dirty fuels forever. Fossil fuels will continue getting harder to find, demand for fuel will continue rising, and petroleum prices will continue going up. Doing nothing will cost us dearly, economically and environmentally. Developing alternatives is the smart investment.
Sensible standards like the ones that California has adopted indicate to entrepreneurs and business leaders that there will be a market for clean energy technologies. These policy signals provide the motivation needed to invest and innovate.
It’s already working. California led the nation by attracting $2.8 billion in clean energy-related venture capital investment in 2011. Remove the policy signals and investments will go away. That will hurt our whole economy, and the most economically vulnerable will be hurt first and worst.
Director, Green Assets, the Greenlining Institute