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Impacts of the Reimagine Appalachia & Clean Energy Transition Programs for Pennsylvania

>> Link for all PERI state-level green economy transitiion programs


Screen Shot 2021 01 27 at 8.50.54 PMThis study proposes a recovery program for Pennsylvania that is capable of exerting an effective counterforce against the state’s ongoing recession in the short run while also building a durable foundation for an economically viable and ecologically sustainable longer-term recovery. As we show, a robust climate stabilization project for Pennsylvania will also serve as a major engine of economic recovery and expanding opportunities throughout the state.

We develop a clean energy investment project through which Pennsylvania can achieve climate stabilization goals which are in alignment with those set out by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) in 2018—that is, to reduce CO2 emissions by 45 percent as of 2030 and to achieve net zero emissions by 2050. We show how these two goals can be accomplished in Pennsylvania through large-scale investments to dramatically raise energy efficiency standards in the state and to equally dramatically expand the supply of clean renewable energy supplies, primarily including solar, wind, low-emissions bioenergy, geothermal and small-scale hydro power.  We also show how this climate stabilization program for Pennsylvania can serve as a major new engine of job creation and economic well-being throughout the state, both in the short- and longer run.  We estimate that, as an average over 2021 – 2030, a clean energy investment program scaled at about $23 billion per year will generate roughly 162,000 jobs per year in Pennsylvania. 

We also present investment programs for Pennsylvania in the areas of public infrastructure, manufacturing, land restoration and agriculture. We have scaled this overall set of investments at $8.2 billion per year over 2021 – 2030, equal to about 1 percent of Pennsylvania’s 2019 GDP.  We estimate that the full program would generate about 81,000 jobs per year in the state.  Overall, the combination of investments in clean energy, manufacturing/infrastructure, and land restoration/agriculture will create about 243,000 jobs in Pennsylvania—equal to roughly 4 percent of Pennsylvania’s current workforce—while providing the foundation for a long-term sustainable growth path for the state.  We also develop alternative viable options for financing this full-scale, short-term recovery and long-term sustainable growth program.

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