It’s time to grow our green economy from the ground up.
A new report from the non-partisan Center for American Progress concludes that a $100 billion federal investment in clean energy technologies over the next two years would yield 2 million new U.S. jobs, cutting the unemployment rate by 1.3 percent, while putting the nation on a path toward a low-carbon economy.
The report, prepared by the Political Economy Research Institute at the University of Massachusetts, proposes $50 billion in tax credits for energy efficiency retrofits and renewable energy systems; $46 billion in direct government spending for public building retrofits, mass transit, freight rail, smart electrical grid systems and renewable energy systems; and $4 billion for federal loan guarantees to finance building retrofits and renewable energy projects.
If $100 billion sounds like an unreasonable number, consider the fact that this year’s economic stimulus package amounted to more than $152 billion, of which about $100 billion was provided to taxpayers in the form of rebate checks. The Center for American Progress report concludes that clean energy investments would yield about 300,000 more jobs than if the same funds were distributed among U.S. taxpayers. The investments also would have the added benefits of lower home energy bills and reduced prices for non-renewable energy sources, thanks to reduced consumption. Visit the Center for American Progress Web site to learn more.
Reprinted from EERE Network News, a free newsletter of the U.S. Department of Energy.