Gabriel Calzada

Gabriel Calzada Alvarez


  • PhD, Economics. [1]


Gabriel Calzada Alvarez is the founder and president of the Instituto Juan de Mariana, a libertarian think tank based in Spain. He has been an Associate Professor of Economics at King Juan Carlos University in Spain since 2004 and Vice-Director of the scholarly Procesos de Mercado. He has been a Rowley Fellow at the Ludwig von Mises Institute, and is also a Fellow at the Centre for the New Europe.

He frequently appears on television broadcasts and has written for publications including Libertad Digital, the Spanish Herald, Expanses, Mises Daily, The Journal of Libertarian Studies, Procesos de Mercados, La Ilustracion Liberal, and Canarias Liberal. [2]

He is author of a controversial study titled “Study of the effects on employment of public aid to renewable energy sources” which made a number of disputed claims regarding green energy and job growth.

Stance on Climate Change

“[S]cientists are still uncertain how much human activity, through Co2 emissions, might be contributing to climate change in comparison to other factors like water vapour or solar activity. There is, however, a scientific consensus on the fact that, even if we froze carbon dioxide emissions as the Kyoto Protocol intended, warming would decrease barely 0.07 degrees centigrade.” [3]

Key Quotes

“Spain has already attempted to lead the world in a clean energy transformation. But our research shows that Spain’s policies were economically destructive. […] Deliberately pursuing more expensive and less efficient energy in order to create green jobs has been the source of social harm and net job destruction, and many citizens of a nation are hurt when such policies are pursued.” [4]

“All the resources that have been taken from other parts of the economy and put into the creation of these jobs or the subsidy of renewable energy, if you look at how many jobs this amount of money created in the rest of the economy, you see that for every job that you have been creating, or subsidizing, you would have created 2.2 jobs in the rest of the economy.” [11]

Key Deeds

April 2012

Gabriel Calzada was a keynote speaker at the Atlas Economic Research Foundation’s 2013 “Atlas Experience.” [5]

June 4, 2010

Calzada discussed Spain’s green job initiatives with the Frontier Center for Public Policy (FCPP). His belief is that “it is incredibly expensive to create a green job” and that green jobs are “”very inefficient.” [6]

May 2010

Calzada was a speaker at the Heartland Institute‘s fourth International Conference on Climate Change (ICCC4) where he gave a speech titled “Green Eggs and Scam: The Myth of Green Jobs.” Video can be viewed below. [14]

DeSmog has done research on the co-sponsors of the conference and found that 19 of the 65 sponsors (including Heartland itself) have received a total of over $40 million in funding since 1985 from ExxonMobilKoch Industries family foundations or the Scaife family foundations.

June 2009

Calzada was a speaker at the Heartland Institute‘s third International Conference on Climate Change (ICCC3) where he spoke on Panel 2: “Economics” with David Tuerck and Jim Sensenbrenner. [13]

March 2009

Calzada was a speaker at the Heartland Institute‘s second International Conference on Climate Change (ICCC2) where he gave a speech titled “Spain´s New Economy: Boom and Bust of the Spanish Renewable Miracle.” Video can be viewed below. [12]

DeSmogBlog researched the funding behind the conference and found that sponsor organizations had collectively received over $47 million from energy companies and right-wing foundations, with 78% of that total coming from the Scaife Family of foundations.

September 2009

Gabriel Calzada was an author of a study (PDF) titled “Study of the effects on employment of public aid to renewable energy sources” claiming that for each green job created  in Spain, 2.2 jobs were destroyed as a result. Other authors included University Rey Juan Carlos researchers Raquel Merino Jara and Juan Ramón Rallo Julián and technical consultant José Ignacio García Bielsa. The study bore the letterhead of the University of Rey Juan Carlos where Calzada is Associate Professor, but was co-commissioned by the Instituto Juan de Mariana.

According to the study, “the Spanish/EU-style ‘green jobs’ agenda now being promoted in the U.S. in fact destroys jobs. […] The study’s results demonstrate how such ‘green jobs’ policy clearly hinders Spain’s way out of the current economic crisis, even while U.S. politicians insist that rushing  into such a scheme will ease their own emergence from the turmoil.”

Calzada was invited to testify before the House Select Committee on Energy Independence by Republican James Sensenbrenner, where he stated that “Europe’s experience actually suggests that this is precisely the wrong approach.” Gabriel Calzada later appeared on Fox News where both he and Sensenbrenner speak in support of the study. Josh Harkinson. [7], [8], [9]

Calzada’s study was debunked by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, which released a report (PDF) in response which came to the following conclusion:

“The analysis by the authors from King Juan Carlos University represents a significant divergence from traditional methodologies used to estimate employment impacts from renewable energy. In fact, the methodology does not reflect an employment impact analysis. Accordingly, the primary conclusion made by the authors – policy support of renewable energy results in net jobs losses – is not supported by their work.” [10]

March 21, 2006

Calzada spoke on “Kyoto and the precautionary principle” at the Second Conference on Economic Thought organized by the Catholic University of Avila in collaboration with the Association of Economists of Avila.

November 2005

Calzada spoke on “The Privatization of Defense” at the Annual London Conference of the Libertarian Alliance. [2]


Around the time that the Instituto Juan de Mariana (IJM) was founded, Gabriel Calzada organized a seminar arguing against the Kyoto Protocol. The seminar was organized by both IJM and the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI) and featured prominent CEI climate change skeptic Christopher Horner.



Gabriel Calzada has published a number of articles in economics including the following:


  1. Dr. Gabriel Calzada,” Zoominfo profile. Last updated 12/1/12.
  3. ZP on Terrorism and Climate Change,” Instituto Juan de Mariana, 2006/11/05.
  5. The Atlas Experience 2012: Speakers,” The Atlas Network. Accessed March 3, 2013.
  6. Conversations from the Frontier Center for Public Policy (C127), June 4, 2010.
  7. Climate Change Deniers Without Borders,” Mother Jones, December 22, 2009.
  8. PERE RUSIÑOL. “The neoliberal lobby PP Spain in the U.S. boycotts” (Translated from Spanish via Google),, July 18, 2009.
  9. Calzada on Fox News Green Jobs Special,” YouTube Video uploaded by user ‘energyforamerica,” September 27, 2011.
  10. Eric Lantz and Suzanne Tegen. ”NREL Response to the Report Study of the Effects on Employment of Public Aid to Renewable Energy Sources from King Juan Carlos University (Spain),” (PDF), National Renewable Energy Laboratory, August 2009.
  11. Spanish economist Calzada discusses use of subsidies to create ‘green’ jobs,” E&E TV, May 13, 2009
  12. Second International Conference on Climate Change, Program,” (PDF) Heartland Institute. Archived January 23, 2018.
  13. “Third International Conference on Climate Change, Program,” (PDF) Heartland Institute. Archived January 23, 2018.
  14. “Fourth International Conference on Climate Change, Program,” (PDF) Heartland Institute. Archived January 23, 2018.

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