No Impact on Prices?

There are times when news articles just leave me scratching my head.  It’s not that I don’t understand what they say.  It’s that I wonder sometimes whether columnists think through fully what they are writing.  Paul Krugman provided my most recent cranial massage.  He wrote:

But suppose that Congress were to mandate gradually tightening emission limits, starting two or three years from now. This would have no immediate effect on prices. It would, however, create major incentives for new investment — investment in low-emission power plants, in energy-efficient factories and more.

Is he seriously saying that forcing companies to build big new, expensive industrial facilities will have no effect on prices?  How many power companies would need to build just one to meet the emissions standards?  You’d probably be looking at replacing or significantly remediating a large percentage of most power companies’ generating facilities.  That’s before you even get into the reality of how long it takes to build just one of these because no one wants to live anywhere near them.  They’d be lucky to have the first online in 10 years.

Then again the left has been telling us spending trillions of dollars on their pet projects won’t impact taxes.  So in a sick way maybe he’s being consistent.

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