Melissa Lavinson: Energy industry will produce jobs


August 27, 2012 - Melissa Lavinson of PG&E at Washington Post Live's Energy & the Election breakfast forum at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Florida. (Donald Lynd)
September 11, 2012

MELISSA LAVINSON

Pacific Gas and Electric Co.

It is a challenge when you have low natural gas prices, and pretty much no resource looks particularly competitive against $2, $3 natural gas prices [per thousand cubic feet]. At the same time, as we look forward, we want to make sure that we have a diverse fuel mix because the thing that’s going to provide predictability and long-term price stability for consumers is to have that diverse fuel mix.

Right now, we employ directly about 400,000 folks in the industry. Over the next 10 to 15 years, we’re going to need to replace half of that through retirements. And we’re going to have to add an additional 150,000 to 200,000 on top of that. So that’s a lot of jobs.

Welders, pipefitters, software engineers, nuclear engineers . . . we need a new generation of workforce to come in, take jobs of folks who are leaving.

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