Smart fuel-efficiency standards will create good jobs

And speaking of jobs and innovation in the auto industry . . . During this year’s political campaigns, some folks will no doubt try to tell us that increasing fuel-economy standards will cost jobs. That’s simply not true.

The standards proposed in 2011 by the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) would reach the equivalent of 54.5 miles per gallon (mpg) and 163 grams of carbon dioxide per mile (g/mi) for the average new vehicle in 2025.

A new analysis by the BlueGreen Alliance and Americans for an Energy Efficient Economy says the proposed standards “will create an estimated 570,000 jobs (full-time equivalent) throughout the U.S economy, including 50,000 in light-duty vehicle manufacturing (parts and vehicle assembly) by the year 2030.”

Real wages are projected to increase even faster than job growth. And gross domestic product will see a net increase from the standards of about $75 billion. So the real fact of the matter is that the proposed standards will both lead to new jobs and, on average, higher paying jobs across the U.S. economy.

In addition to the money spent directly by the auto sector, the proposed standards create even more jobs by helping drivers save money on gas, money that will be spent elsewhere, stimulating the economy.

Add it up and throw in the environmental and politicMal benefits from reducing our demand for imported oil? That’s what they call “win-win.”