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Two New Sites Show the Truth About Clean Energy Jobs in America

Bob Keefe

Posted November 3, 2011 in Curbing Pollution, Green Enterprise, Health and the Environment, Living Sustainably, Solving Global Warming, The Media and the Environment

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Skim the headlines or listen to the political rhetoric coming from some in Congress, and you might think the clean energy industry is dead, dying or maybe some sort of scam.

Truth is, clean energy companies of all sorts — from manufacturers to power companies — are adding jobs on a daily basis in communities across the country.

To try and counter some of the crazy talk coming out of clean energy critics and big oil industry backers, NRDC and its affiliate, Environmental Entrepreneurs, just launched two new resources that help tell the real story on clean energy jobs in America.

Screen shot 2011-11-03 at 12.48.06 PM.pngAt nrdc.org/energy/renewables, you’ll find a unique interactive map showing every major existing or planned renewable energy project in every state in the country - whether it’s a solar installation, a wind farm or a biofuels operation. You can also click a button to see the renewable energy potential for every state, county or zip code in America.

What we’ve found is that there are now clean energy projects in every single state – including the states and the congressional districts of some of the most outspoken clean energy policy critics in Congress.

At www.e2.org/cleanjobs, meanwhile, you’ll find a weekly compilation of clean energy jobs being created across the country, countering claims that the clean energy industry isn’t viable or growing.

This week’s edition of www.e2.org/cleanjobs contains details on 26 clean energy projects in 15 states that could generate thousands of new American jobs.

Some of these projects, it turns out, happen to be in the home states and districts of some of the most vocal critics of our country’s clean energy policies.

Among the clean energy job announcements included in this week’s edition, for instance, are several projects in the home state of Senate Republican Leader Sen. Mitch McConnell and the Tea Party’s Sen. Rand Paul. An innovative biofuels project in Louisville, Ky., for instance, is expected to save 340 jobs at three companies. Elsewhere in Kentucky, vehicle efficiency projects at Johnson Controls and Hitachi Automotive Systems America will create more than 100 other new jobs.

Last week’s www.e2.org/cleanjobs tally included the announcement of a biomass plant that will create more than 665 construction jobs in Gainesville, Fla., near the home of Republican Rep. Cliff Stearns – even as Rep. Stearns continues to hold hearings on the validity of clean energy support in America.

Back over at the new NRDC renewables site, meanwhile, click on the home counties of Republican Rep. Darrell Issa — who has been leading the charge against clean energy in Congress — and you’ll find a wide range of existing and proposed renewable energy projects, including wind farms, solar installations and geothermal projects.

You can also see on NRDC’s renewable energy map that there’s huge potential for wind, solar and other renewable energy in Rep. Issa’s district – if only he and others in Congress don’t kill off national energy programs in their rush to politicize recent clean energy company failures.

Of course NRDC and E2 aren’t the only ones who are pointing out that what we’re hearing about the scandalous demise of clean energy from Republicans in Washington and from big oil industry backers like Americans for Prosperity isn’t true. 

A report just out from Ernst & Young, for instance, shows that venture capital investment in cleantech companies increased by 73 percent to $1.1 billion in the third quarter of this year.

Together, all of this should put to rest claims that the more than 2.7 million clean economy jobs in America aren’t real — and show that we need to keep supporting clean energy development if we want to continue creating 21st Century jobs in our country.

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Comments (Add yours)

Joaquin MuirNov 5 2011 08:15 PM

If you are going to counter rhetoric, you should provide a map that has factual info.
Your map contains projects that are listed as current/existing when in fact they are not.

The NRDC plays the same game as the rest of corporate America

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Switchboard is the staff blog of the Natural Resources Defense Council, the nation’s most effective environmental group. For more about our work, including in-depth policy documents, action alerts and ways you can contribute, visit NRDC.org.

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