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Letter to Barack Obama, Presidential Candidate of the United States - Green Job Creation

Letter

By:
Date:
Location: Washington, DC

U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), a member of the Senate Finance and Energy Committees, today announced her Green Jobs and Infrastructure Act (S.224) that would create middle-class, green jobs by investing in green technology here at home. Stabenow sent a letter today to President-Elect Obama encouraging him to use her bill as a framework in the economic recovery package. Stabenow also led a coalition of 18 Senators who sent a similar letter to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and the Senate Appropriations Committee back in December.

"By making real investments in the domestic production of advanced batteries, and other alternative energy technologies, we can create good-paying, middle-class American jobs," said Stabenow. "This legislation will invest in green technology, innovation and production, here at home, to ensure we don't move from a dependence on foreign oil to a dependence on foreign technology."

This major national investment in green manufacturing, advanced batteries for vehicles, energy efficiency and green job training could create or retain more than 1.2 million jobs, including 60,000 direct jobs in construction and 274,000 direct jobs in manufacturing. Such an investment could also generate $2.3 billion in residential and commercial energy savings and $120 billion in industry revenue from increased demand for products and services.

Specifically, this legislation includes:

Clean Tech Manufacturing Incentives (loans)
Aims at helping our manufacturing sector retool or invest in new plans to produce clean technology and low carbon products or invest in new plants to produce these products and operate more efficiently. This will rebuild domestic manufacturing and create more than 250,000 direct manufacturing jobs, as well as and additional 725,000 indirect jobs.

Advanced Batteries (at least $1 billion)
Increases research and production of advanced battery technologies, including lithium ion batteries and hybrid electrical systems. Without these critical investments, the United States will fall behind our trading rivals in what promises to be one of the most important technologies of the future - advanced batteries.
Green Jobs Workforce Training Program ($625 million)
Provides competitive grants to non-profits and private partnerships to train workers that will lead to an expanded energy efficiency and renewable energy industry workforce. This investment could create millions of jobs over the next ten years.

Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grants ($10 billion)
Provides cities, counties and states with resources needed to promote alternative energy usage and energy efficiencies. These block grants will get locally driven projects off the ground and have the potential to create 60,000 jobs in construction and installation over the next year, 24,000 jobs in material manufacturing as well as an additional 183,600 indirect jobs in other sectors.

Stabenow's bill is part of her broader 21st Century Green Manufacturing Plan that will invigorate the economy. Stabenow's plan also includes her Green-Collar Jobs Initiative, which was included in the Senate Budget Resolution last year, as well as tax incentives and other programs that create quality green-collar jobs, address global competitiveness, develop clean technology, and increase our energy security.

Full text of the letter to President-elect Obama below:

January 14, 2009

President-Elect Barack Obama
Obama Presidential Transition Office
451 6th Street, NW
Washington, D.C. 20001

Dear President-Elect Obama,

As Congress and the new Administration work together to evaluate options for reinvigorating the struggling economy, I write to urge you to include my bill (S.224), the Green Jobs and Infrastructure Act of 2009 to stimulate new green jobs in the economy. These programs will not only invigorate the economy and create quality green-collar jobs, but they will increase our energy security, and play a critical role in our transition to a clean energy economy by reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

This major national investment in green manufacturing, energy efficiency and job training could create or retain more than 1.2 million jobs, including 60,000 direct jobs in construction and 274,000 direct jobs in manufacturing. Such an investment could also generate $2.3 billion in residential and commercial energy savings and $120 billion in industry revenue from increased demand for products and services.

The priority green job programs for economic recovery legislation are:

1) Clean Tech Manufacturing Incentives (loans)-- We need a 21st century plan for manufacturing, and the production of new clean technology and low carbon products is not only a necessity for the environment but an economic opportunity. Therefore, a large-scale loan program aimed at helping our manufacturing sector retool or invest in new plants to produce clean tech products and operate more efficiently should be part of an economic stimulus. This will rebuild domestic manufacturing and create more than 250,000 direct manufacturing jobs, as well as an additional 725,000 indirect jobs.

2) Advanced Batteries (at least $1 billion)--As we move towards a low carbon economy, the electrification of vehicles is a priority. However, we cannot move from a dependency on foreign oil to a dependency on foreign-made technology. We therefore request that you allocate at least $1 billion for grant programs to help incent the domestic manufacturing of advanced batteries that were part of the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 (P.L.110-140). This will help jump-start the industry and build a globally competitive green vehicle technology workforce.

3) Energy Efficiency & Conservation Block Grants ($10 billion) - This program, modeled after the successful Community Development Block Grants, would provide support to cities, counties, states and tribes for on-the-ground efforts to achieve greater energy efficiency, increase the use of renewables, and lower greenhouse gas emissions. Our cities drive our national economy, accounting for more than 75 percent of economic output. This makes cities the cheapest, easiest places to save energy. Funding this program will help get locally driven projects off the ground, saving both money and energy, with the added benefit of immediately putting people to work. These block grants have the potential to create 60,000 jobs in construction and installation over the next year, 24,000 jobs in materials manufacturing, as well as an additional 183,600 indirect jobs in other sectors and could generate up to $2.3 billion in energy savings each year.

4) Green Jobs Workforce Training Program ($625 million)--A major national investment in renewable energy and energy efficiency could create millions of jobs over the next ten years. According to the National Renewable Energy Laboratory the lack of skilled workers is the largest non-technical barrier to the advancement of renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies. Training America's workforce in energy efficiency and renewable energy is a winning strategy. Our economy will benefit by the investment in high-growth and demand fields. Our manufacturing sector will benefit from keeping these jobs in the United States. And finally, families from all socio-economic backgrounds will benefit from good-paying, high-skilled jobs and reduced energy bills.

This investment would create millions of new jobs in the immediate future, help end our dependence on foreign oil, rebuild our manufacturing sector, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. We urge you to support funding for these policies in a comprehensive economic recovery act.

Sincerely,

U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow


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