In Germany, going green is turning to gold
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  1. #1
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    Default In Germany, going green is turning to gold

    1) A kilowatt of electricity costs three times as much here as it does in the United States, supercharged with high taxes to discourage use and to help fund renewable energy development.

    2) A 50 percent "eco-tax" has sent the price of gasoline soaring to $8 a gallon.

    3) To manage costs, the family of three unplugs all their appliances but the refrigerator at night, avoids driving and limits steam baths -- a favorite German custom. "We have no choice," said Andreas Pokropp, a former coal refinery worker. "We have to be green, even if we can't afford it."

    4) Yet the Pokropps have also reaped rewards from Germany's fight against global warming. After years of looking for steady work in this moribund coal region, Mariola Pokropp found it in 2006 at Eickhoff, a 145-year-old manufacturer of mining equipment that has reinvented itself in green times, retooling its assembly lines to make 30-ton gearboxes for wind power generation. It is part of a heavily subsidized industry that has generated hundreds of thousands of jobs, paid for by consumers through higher energy bills.

    5) Europe's most populous nation represents a test case for what happens when a major economy sets down a greener path.

    6) Germany, which exports more than China and climbed out of the global recession faster than the United States, has been able to cut emissions without damaging its overall economy. Concerns are mounting that stricter measures coming into effect in 2013 may yet force an exodus of jobs. But as new markets have emerged for efficient building materials and renewable energy, even some of the harshest critics of Germany's green policies concede that they have created more jobs than they have cost.

    7) The renewable sector alone, including one of the world's largest solar industries (in a nation where the sun often hides), employs 260,000, one-quarter the size of the country's auto workforce.

    8) Yet as Germany has ramped up alternative energy generation, Gelsenkirchen and surrounding cities have witnessed a rebound in jobs, with thousands coming from companies that started building solar panels at old steel mills and churning out $15,000 heat pumps in industrial parks on the city's edge.



    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn...T2009112003699

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    This is exactly what Obama wants to do here in the US, except he's probably thinking of just borrowing money from China to pay for the jobs, and renewable energy instead of making people pay for it. I just don't think the US can stomach, paying $8/gallon for gas and 3x the electricity bill. With unemployment + underemployment at around 18% and climbing, and I heard that about 80% of the jobs created in the last 8 or 9 years were real estate related, and no those jobs are not being created, we are not looking at a country that can support a change like that, and even if we could, it's not likely it would pass congress.

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    Quote Originally Posted by omnimoeish View Post
    This is exactly what Obama wants to do here in the US, except he's probably thinking of just borrowing money from China to pay for the jobs, and renewable energy instead of making people pay for it. I just don't think the US can stomach, paying $8/gallon for gas and 3x the electricity bill. With unemployment + underemployment at around 18% and climbing, and I heard that about 80% of the jobs created in the last 8 or 9 years were real estate related, and no those jobs are not being created, we are not looking at a country that can support a change like that, and even if we could, it's not likely it would pass congress.


    I would argue that we cannot afford not to go green.

    What do you think the big markets are going to be? Yup, anything that gets us off of petroleum and then other fossil fuels.

    The point of the article is that even though Germany seems to be overburdened, they came out of recession before the U.S. Investing in green technology is going to pay huge dividends.

    Will the U.S. do it? No, of course not. That doesn't mean we shouldn't.

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    It'll be an interesting experiment to see if it's possible for a nation to tax itself into prosperity. Germany has been know to try some crazy things, maybe this one will work out.

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    Quote Originally Posted by misslexi View Post
    It'll be an interesting experiment to see if it's possible for a nation to tax itself into prosperity. Germany has been know to try some crazy things, maybe this one will work out.
    If those taxes make imported energy more expensive, and domestically produced energy the cheaper alternative...maybe. There is a multiplier effect on GNP for every dollar (or euro in this case) that stays in a nation's economy. The magnitude of that multiplier effect is debatable.

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    Quote Originally Posted by misslexi View Post
    It'll be an interesting experiment to see if it's possible for a nation to tax itself into prosperity. Germany has been know to try some crazy things, maybe this one will work out.
    It is a powerful force for social engineering.. amazing that the germans willingly submitted to this.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hermperez View Post
    It is a powerful force for social engineering.. amazing that the germans willingly submitted to this.



    You mean social engineering opposed to just letting your country run around with no head? Like a chicken with it's head cut off, running around in any random direction?

    Actually, the citizens of many countries realize that they have to plan for the future and work together for a common goal.

    The U.S. is such a huge and unyielding giant that it's almost impossible to agree on anything. This explains the mess we are in. Imagine a country as big and powerful as ours without an energy policy. Yes, we are in deep trouble.

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    its ok, as long as I am in charge..

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    Default US != Germany

    You can not extrapolate Germany experiment into US,
    simply because Germany is 7.5 times (!) more densely populated than US. They live in apartments not sub-barbs and they have buses and trains readily available. Things are in walking distance over there. They could sell 1 gallon of gas for $20 or more instead of $8 if they would want to.

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