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Solar Technology Roadmap Act

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, D.C.


Mr. KIND. Mr. Chair, I rise today in support of H.R. 3585, the Solar Technology Roadmap Act. This bill establishes an important energy tax title that will create the high-paying green jobs our economy needs, while simultaneously taking strong actions to help in our longer-term fight to combat global warming.

Even with rapid growth in solar and wind installations, most clean technologies installed in the U.S. continue to be manufactured overseas. In the case of solar, the U.S. is steadily falling behind the rest of the world in manufacturing capacity, dropping from 22 percent in 2002 to a mere 7 percent in 2007. Similarly, European firms now account for more than 85 percent of the global wind component market, and the U.S. has only a modest share of global manufacturing of other clean technologies, ranging from fuel cells to advanced batteries. We cannot continue down this path.

We are a nation of leaders and we need to start leading. We must cultivate a new mindset where sustainable technology and a clean manufacturing base are at the forefront. Initiatives like the Solar Technology Roadmap, which level the manufacturing playing field and incentivize investment, are what we need. This tax credit will create new manufacturing jobs--a need that cannot be understated given that the U.S. shed more than 1 million manufacturing jobs in the past 12 months. Correspondingly, the credit will increase the tax base and improve our trade balance. These are key components to our nation's economic recovery and long-term economic growth. Other nations are making these investments and, to remain globally competitive, we need to do the same.

I am pleased at the length to which this bill goes to create green jobs and urge my colleagues to support this measure.

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