In addition to embracing Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s Green New Deal, Elizabeth Warren recently stated that, as president, she would demand that all new buildings be “carbon-neutral,” starting in 2028.
This latest brainstorm comes on top of the Massachusetts senator’s previous environmental vows: to ban all oil and gas drilling on her first day in office, mandate that all cars and trucks be carbon-neutral by 2030 and force the closure of all existing, carbon-free nuclear power plants. Really?
This is the same Warren who introduced legislation in October 2018 to end homelessness and “housing poverty” in America. Those are real problems. Government should help address them. But her latest green-housing mandate makes zero sense if she wants to address housing poverty: You can’t end that by making housing more expensive everywhere.
To see what a carbon-neutral-building mandate will mean, just look at California. The Golden State has already mandated that all newly built homes have solar panels, raising the cost of new houses by thousands of dollars.
Jonathan A. Lesser, PhD, is the president of Continental Economics, an economic consulting firm, and an adjunct fellow with the Manhattan Institute. His most recent report, “Is There a Future for Nuclear Power in the United States?” was published in July 2019.
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