Saturday, December 03, 2011

Nurturing Green Buildings Initiatives

This Week in Clean Economy: Obama Nurtures His Base with Green Buildings Initiative
Under GOP attack for his Keystone XL delay, Obama goes with his base—and the clean economy. Cap and trade loses favor, and solar fights for a key subsidy.

Dec 2, 2011 - Unions and oil companies painted President Obama as a jobs destroyer for his decision to delay the Keystone XL oil sands pipeline at a GOP-led hearing this morning—but is that true?

Not according to one of the lone dissenting witnesses, a clean energy advocate who said if permanent jobs are the goal, the president must shift the country's energy focus away from oil infrastructure to the manufacturing-heavy green sectors.

"We need to think long term ... The answer lies in increased investment in the research and development of green alternative energy projects," said Jerome Ringo in testimony to the House Energy and Commerce Committee's Subcommittee on Energy and Power. Ringo, a former oil worker, was the president of the Apollo Alliance, a coalition of unions and environmental groups now part of the BlueGreen Alliance.

Now it seems Obama—who is under heavy attack from Republicans for choosing to put off the Keystone XL decision for at least a year—is heeding such calls from his base to invigorate the clean economy.

Today the president unveiled a $4 billion green-buildings initiative with former president Bill Clinton and U.S. industrial giants, including 3M Co. and Alcoa Inc., to retrofit 1.6 billion square feet of government facilities over the next two years using private money and existing federal programs. read more>>>

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