If Illinois might get its act collectively, clear tech investments would add $350 billion to financial system
The national Advanced Energy Economy (AEE) group released the results of a report that quantified significant economic benefits associated with investing in advanced energy for the state of Illinois. The report, prepared for AEE by international economic consultant Analysis Group, used an industry-standard modeling tool to assess the impact of investing state or federal economic funds in advanced energy technologies, products and services to stimulate economic activity following the COVID-19 Slowdown.
The full report, “Economic Impact of Business Stimulus Investments in Advanced Energy: An Economic Assessment of the Use of Stimulus Funds for Advanced Energy Technologies, Products, and Services in Illinois,” is available here.
“As Illinois ponders how to respond to the dire economic impact of the coronavirus health crisis, this report shows that investing in advanced energy is generating a whopping eight times the return on our state’s economy, creating jobs in the state, and adding much-needed tax revenue to state and government local registers, ”said Daniel Bloom, Principal, Advanced Energy Economy. “Such public incentives also attract billions in private investments and save consumers – both commercial and retail – billions in energy costs every year.
“By investing in energy efficiency and renewables while accelerating the transition to electrified buildings and zero-emission transportation, we can generate significant economic activity in our hardest-hit communities and help Illinois meet its ambitious energy and emissions reduction goals,” added Bloom.
Specifically, the report shows that a hypothetical $ 45 billion investment in public investment in Illinois, spread across a range of advanced energy technologies, would bring the following economic benefits:
- With a total of $ 357 billion for the Illinois economy (gross product), the return is eight times that.
- Attract complementary private investment of $ 110 billion, adding to the above GSP impact.
- Creation of 2.1 million new jobs measured in man years resulting in a mix of short term construction or installation jobs and longer term positions;
- Increase in tax revenue for local and state governments by $ 31.3 billion; and,
- Save more than $ 16 billion annually on energy costs.
The report found that energy efficiency investments were the biggest boost to the Illinois economy, with a total GSP of $ 237 billion and the most jobs (nearly 1.3 million jobs measured in man years). The next largest impact was the generation of renewable energy (including solar, wind, and distributed solar) for a total of $ 56 billion and 357,000 jobs. Investing in electric vehicles – electric vehicles and their associated charging infrastructure – would add $ 30 billion to the economy and create 240,000 jobs across the state’s electric vehicle supply chain. Electrifying buildings will create $ 18 billion in economic activity and 140,000 jobs.
In terms of consumer savings, investments in energy efficiency brought the greatest benefits. For residential customers, energy efficiency would save $ 10 billion a year and rooftop solar systems would save $ 930 million a year. Commercial and industrial customers would save $ 4.2 billion annually through energy efficiency improvements and on-site solar systems. Switching from gasoline-powered to electric vehicles could save drivers $ 850 million in fuel costs.
The report notes that a greater or lesser degree of economic investment would lead to more or less economic effects. However, the modeling shows that advanced energy business stimulus investments bring important and positive economic benefits to the Illinois state, and can add significant value to the Illinois economy, creating millions of jobs and transferring additional revenue to state and local governments.
“Illinois is uniquely able to take advantage of the economic benefits of advanced energy technologies thanks to a strong foundation built by the Pritzker administration and general assembly leadership,” said Bloom. “With more than 137,000 employees in the sector and an established government supply chain supported by a wide variety of companies, advanced energy is poised to fuel our economic recovery while supporting our commitment to providing safe, clean, and affordable energy for all . “
AEE’s datasheet on Illinois Jobs shows that in 2019 the advanced energy industry employed 137,300 people in Illinois, more than supermarkets and grocery stores and twice as many in real estate across the state. Employers in the sector said they expected jobs to rise significantly by 6% before the COVID-19 success.
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