Moderator: Howard Husock, Vice President, Policy Research, Manhattan Institute
Advocates for green jobs and renewable energy see the free market failing in important ways. They argue that government intervention is necessary to decrease pollution and increase innovation. Viewed in this light, the Obama administration’s green jobs and technology initiative stands firmly in the tradition of the Defense Department’s support for the early Internet and the federal role in the construction of the interstate highway system. Others disagree, however, on the grounds that the risk of politicization of subsidies outweighs the purported benefits. Critics maintain that the impact of wasted taxpayer resources on unproved technologies and the rising cost of power due to green energy requirements should be of greater concern.