Lots of people are putting more insulation in their homes, making plans to add PV systems, and finding more efficient ways to keep warm in winter and cool in the summer. So what are we doing with the money we’re not spending on gas and electricity? Amy Standen reported on today’s California Report radio show about a new UC Berkeley study. Consumers, the report found, spend the money that they save on utilities—and those savings added up to a whopping 56 billion dollars in 1972 to 2006. The money is spent on consumer purchases—things like cups of coffee, meals out, and decorations for the home purchased from retail stores. All these services, the report points out, require vastly more jobs than utility companies. This is one of the reasons, the report suggests, that California has had such a strong economy, and why its continuing focus on green innovation will effectively add $48 billion to California's paychecks in the coming years.
So saving the environment can go hand-in-hand with economic development.
Direct link to the audio (the report is the last third of the stream)
Illustration Jonathan Bean, cafe photo by gozdeo via sxc.hu