US Offshore Wind Jobs are Highly Exaggerated
From: Caesar Rodney Institute
Extrapolating from an actual approved project leads to an estimate of only about 5,500 jobs, and even that number may be high. Further, the study ignores possibly over 25,600 jobs potentially lost from huge electric premiums that redirect consumer and business spending elsewhere in the economy.
The Maryland Public Service Commission (PSC) recently approved the 846 MW Skipjack 2 offshore wind project off Delaware’s coast. A review[i] of the project by the PSC consultant indicates there will be 857 temporary construction jobs and 25 permanent Operational & Maintenance jobs.
There are limited plans to build the turbines in the US, which accounts for 56% of the forecasted jobs. Induced jobs are indirect jobs created by the wages spent by direct employees and change as payroll estimates change.
The Wood Mackenzie study assumes that over half the new projects would be off the Carolinas. However, any new project needs massive state subsidies, and neither North Carolina nor South Carolina has such legislated mandated subsidies.
Money spent on higher utility bills reduces spending on everything else, like going to a restaurant or the movies.
The Skipjack project premiums[ii] will be passed onto electric customers and may average $125/MWh for the 3.3 million MWh of wind energy produced each year, or about $410 million a year. That extrapolates to $2.05 billion a year for the 4,200 MW construction the study expects. A job may be lost for every $80,000[iii] spent on higher electric bills, so up to 25,600 jobs may be lost.
Wood Mackenzie is generally reliable, but this study misses by a country mile and is misleading elected officials and the public.