DOE Says We Can Have Carbon Caps and Economic Growth

You have heard me talk about the economic benefits of passing a global warming law. Now you can get the news from the Department of Energy itself. This week, the DOE’s Energy Information Agency released a report showing that we can cut U.S. global warming pollution to the levels required by the pending Lieberman-Warner bill and still enjoy robust economic growth. 

This official government forecast confirms what NRDC, financial institutions, and scores of major US corporations have been saying for the past few years: solving global warming is affordable.

Here is just one sample indicator.


  • Our economy is slated to grow from $13.13 trillion in 2006 to $20.22 trillion by 2030. If we pass Lieberman-Warner, the DOE estimates that our economy will grow to $20.16 trillion in the same time period. That’s a statistically imperceptible difference equal to a two-month delay in growth.


Early this week, President Bush stood in the Rose Garden grumbling that many members of Congress support legislation--Lieberman-Warner--that will make energy more expensive and hurt the economy. The President’s own Department Energy refutes that point.

In fact, we can take the profits from the pollution allowances created by the proposed cap and trade system we can invest them in two critical programs. First, we can offset any increases in utility bills for low income families. And, second, if we reinvest them in energy efficiency and clean energy technologies, Lieberman-Warner will be a growth engine for green jobs and a booming clean energy sector.