On the Nov. 5 edition of CNBCs “Squawk Box,” former CEO of GE Jack Welch guest hosted and did not shy away from his opinions of the current administration. Welch emphasized the great opportunity America has with natural gas and how some of Obama’s proposed green energy bills pose a great threat to the economy.
One of those big threats, according to Welch, is the Ozone regulations bill, which was pushed back to be enacted in early 2013. “Ozone is a trillion dollar bill to the U.S. economy,” Welch stated. “If they put the ozone restrictions in that they want and take them down to sixty parts per billion, take them down there, it’s a trillion dollar bill.”
Welch was not enthused about the push for solar and wind energy immediately. “Wind and solar energy may be just right for us thirty years down the road, forty years down the road …” In regards to natural gas, he said it had the potential to “change our whole economy.”
Welch went on to discuss climate change. “I’m not a climatologist,” he said, “but the stuff I read says this has not been an unusual year, or an unusual decade. In fact, it’s the opposite.” He compared today’s environmentalists – specifically those who oppose hydraulic fracturing, a process of removing natural gas from the ground – to the anti-nuclear protestors. Climate change “gives those people an argument,” according to Welch.
Welch stated that “this is the American century” and “energy is the lifeblood of the economy.” If we don’t pursue all possible energy sources, than our economy will continue to stagnate. “All sorts of great things could happen” Welch believed, if America actually pursued energy independence.