Net Zero could cost Americans more than $50 trillion, new paper warns

By Paul Homewood



An eminent researcher has warned that any attempt to decarbonise the US economy by 2050 is doomed to failure.
Professor Michael Kelly, from the University of Cambridge in the UK, has previously studied the impact of Net Zero projects in the UK and his native New Zealand, and has now turned his expertise to the United States.
His headline findings are a stark warning for politicians across the country.
“The cost to 2050 will comfortably exceed $12 trillion for electrification projects, and $35 trillion for improving the energy efficiency of buildings. A work-force comparable in size to the health sector will be required for 30 years, including a doubling of the present number of electrical engineers. The bill of specialist materials is of a size that, for the USA alone, is several times the global annual production.”
Professor Kelly warns that politicians are not thinking through the scale of the project they are pursuing.
“It’s clear that no country has the manpower, the materials, or the money to deliver Net Zero. It cannot be attempted without establishing a command economy, and even then it would fail. This is a fool’s errand.”

Michael Kelly: The Feasibility of a Net-Zero Economy for the USA by 2050 (pdf)

I usually work on a ratio of 10 to 1 when comparing US and UK GDP, so this would equate to about £4bn in UK terms, which is broadly in line with other estimations.


March 17, 2023 at 09:38AM

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