As Robert Costa noted, Sen. Joe Lieberman (I., Conn.) is already talking about the impact the Japan earthquake had on the country’s nuclear plants and urging the U.S. to “put the brakes” on any new nuclear plants.
But as a study released by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce last week shows, the nation’s current energy regulation is already impacting the economy. The study estimated that the 351 energy projects currently stalled or canceled because of regulatory barriers could have created 1.9 million jobs and added $1.1 trillion to the country’s GDP. (And even green energy projects are being impacted!)
“What is urgently needed now is a careful consideration of how all these permitting obstacles, uncertainties, and time delays can be addressed to speed up the processing, approval decisions, and development of many of the job-creating projects whose progress has so far been denied,” wrote Chamber president Thomas Donahue in a USA Today op-ed. “Private investors and developers are prepared to fund, build, and operate energy projects that could materially increase GDP and create many jobs — but only if policymakers remove obstacles.”