Emissions control rules being proposed by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will provide economic benefits and jobs across much of the U.S. in the next five years, according to a new report from Ceres, a network of investors and environmental organizations.
The report found that the power sector will invest almost $200 billion total in capital improvements over the next five years. Total employment created by these capital investments is estimated at 1.46 million jobs, or about 290,000 jobs on average in each of the next five years. Among the states that will see the biggest job gains from this construction activity are Virginia, Tennessee, Illinois, North Carolina and Indiana.
The study also finds that permanent operation and maintenance (O&M) jobs associated with pollution control installations and new generation construction will be created in all states. Although some O&M jobs will be lost because of projected retirement of older, less efficient coal plants, these losses will be offset by new O&M jobs, resulting in an approximately 4,200 net job gain across the 36 states studied.
The new report evaluates job impacts under two Clean Air Act rules expected to be finalized in 2011: the Clean Air Transport Rule, and the Utility MACT rule.