Discussion paper

DP17206 Do Renewable Energy Investments Create Local Jobs?

Globally, renewable energy deployment often faces opposition from local communities. Why do residents oppose those investments despite the expectation that the investments will create new jobs? Exploiting the monthly variation in the timing and size of the renewable investments across more than 3,900 Spanish municipalities from 2017 to 2021, we find that the new jobs do not always remain in the municipalities where the plants are built. We find stronger employment and unemployment multipliers for solar than wind projects, reflecting differences in the tasks and skills involved. Beyond the labor market impacts, residents benefit from the investments through greater public spending and increased per capita income. However, these effects are modest, particularly in the case of small to medium-sized plants.


Fabra, N, E Gutiérrez, A Lacuesta and R Ramos (2022), ‘DP17206 Do Renewable Energy Investments Create Local Jobs?‘, CEPR Discussion Paper No. 17206. CEPR Press, Paris & London. https://cepr.org/publications/dp17206