Category Archives: Green Jobs

The Winds of Change ~ Cape Wind Farm Project Approved

Posted by: TheLCster

After Years Of Legal Battles, America’s First Offshore Wind Farm Is A Go

AP~The Obama administration has approved what would be the nation’s first offshore wind farm, off Cape Cod, inching the U.S. closer to harvesting an untapped domestic energy source – the steady breezes blowing along its vast coasts.

U.S. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar

U.S. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar announced his decision Wednesday in Boston, clearing the way for a 130-turbine wind farm in Nantucket Sound. Cape Wind was in its ninth year of federal review, and Salazar stepped in early this year to bring what he called much-needed resolution to the bitterly contested proposal.

We are beginning a new direction in our nation’s energy future,” Salazar said.

Cape Wind says it can generate power by 2012 and aims to eventually supply three-quarters of the power on Cape Cod, which has about 225,000 residents. Cape Wind officials say it will provide green jobs and a reliable domestic energy source, while offshore wind advocates are hoping it can jump-start the U.S. industry.

America’s onshore wind industry is the world’s largest, but higher upfront costs, tougher technological challenges and environmental concerns have held back the development of offshore wind farms.

Denmark installed the world’s first offshore wind turbine 20 years ago. China has built its first commercial wind farm off Shanghai and plans several other projects.

The U.S. Department of Energy envisions offshore wind farms accounting for 4 percent of the country’s electric generating capacity by 2030.

The Cape Wind Fact Sheet, Project Site Map and the Secretary’s Response to the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation are available here or here. More information on the project can be found here.

Seven Must-Know Facts About the Cape Wind Project

  • Cape Wind will be the country’s first offshore wind farm. The US Department Of Energy predicts that offshore wind farms alone will handle 4% of the country’s electricity generating capacity by 2030.
  • The project will be ready to generate power in 2012, and Cape Wind plans on supplying 75% of Cape Cod, Martha’s Vineyard, and Nantucket Island’s power combined with the clean energy technology. At peak capacity, the project has the capability to meet 4% of the entire New England region’s power needs.
  • When announcing the approval of the offshore wind farm, Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar said, “With this decision we are beginning a new direction in our Nation’s energy future, ushering in America’s first offshore wind energy facility and opening a new chapter in the history of this region.”
  • The 130-turbine wind farm in Nantucket Sound will be no closer than 5 miles to land, and 14 miles away at its furthest. On a clear day, the turbines would only be a half-inch tall on the horizon when viewed from the nearest point of land. The number of turbines have been reduced from an original proposal of 170 to 130 to address concerns about harming views.
  • Cape Wind will create 600 – 1,000 construction jobs and 50 permanent wind power jobs.
  • The United Kingdom and Denmark are the leaders in offshore wind power, though many countries, like Germany, Norway, The Netherlands, and China, have invested in the renewable energy source as well. In 2007, Denmark (who built the first offshore wind farm decades ago) generated 19.7% of their electricity production from their combined wind power farms. That same year, 1.5% of electricity in the UK was generated by wind.
  • The green light for Cape Wind gives a lot of hope to the many other offshore wind farms being proposed in places like Texas, Delaware, and New Jersey. The Department Of The Interior writes, “the project would […..] be one of the largest greenhouse gas reduction initiatives in the nation, cutting carbon dioxide emissions from conventional power plants by 700,000 tons annually. That is equivalent to removing 175,000 cars from the road for a year.”

President Obama Visits Wind Turbine Blade Plant in Iowa

The President visits a Siemens wind turbine blade manufacturing plant in Fort Madison, IA on his White House to Main Street tour and speaks about how his Administrations investments in clean energy are creating jobs and new industries.

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Filed under Alternative Energy, Barack Obama, Change, Environment, Green, Green Energy, Green Jobs, Pres. Barack Obama, Secretary Kenneth L. Salazar (Sec of Interior), Uncategorized, Wind Turbine

President Obama Visits Charlotte, NC Manufacturing Facility, Discusses Economy

Posted by: Audiegrl
Written by Jessie Lee

On Jobs: We Are Beginning to Turn the Corner

President Barack Obama speaks to employees about jobs and the economy during a visit to Celgard LLC facility on April 2, 2010 in Charlotte, North Carolina. Celgard received $49.2 million in Recovery Act grants to expand its capacity to produce separators for lithium-ion batteries. The Charlotte campus already employs 390 workers and the expansion will add 80 in this facility. Overall, Celgard's expansion will create between 200-300 North Carolina jobs. (Photo by Sara Davis/Getty Images North America)

The President traveled to Charlotte, North Carolina today, where he visited Celgard, Inc., a manufacturing company that is benefiting from the Recovery Act investments towards clean energy. There, the President delivered remarks about the current state of the economy and job growth, announcing that it was reported today that the economy has produced a substantial number of jobs, averaging 50,000 a month – “the best news we’ve seen on the job front in more than two years.”

He acknowledged that while the economy appears to be picking up, there is still a lot of work to be done:

Economic statistics don’t do justice to the pain and anxiety that results from unemployment. Lasting unemployment takes a toll on families, takes a toll on marriages, takes a toll on children. It saps the vitality of communities, especially in places that have seen factories and other anchoring businesses shut their doors. And being unable to find work — being able to provide for your family — that doesn’t just affect your economic security, that affects your heart and your soul. It beats you up. It’s hard.

So we have to be mindful that today’s job numbers, while welcome, leaves us with a lot more work to do. It will take time to achieve the strong and sustained job growth that we need.

The President said that the private sector is the “true engine of job growth in this country,” and that while the government “can’t reverse the toll of this recession overnight”, it can help to spur job growth by providing incentives for companies to begin hiring again. The President recently signed the HIRE Act, a jobs bill that provides tax cuts for businesses that hire new employees, and makes investments in clean energy and schools to encourage job creation. He explained that the Recovery Act also made significant investments in infrastructure, helping to create private sector jobs.

He explained that Celgard, Inc. received a $50 million grant through the Recovery Act to expand the facility and lead in the clean energy sector:

So here’s the bottom line: This investment is expected to create nearly 300 jobs for this company, more than a thousand jobs for your contractors and suppliers — and these are all jobs helping America build the batteries that will power cleaner and more efficient cars and trucks. And through investments like this one across the country, we’re already seeing an incredible transformation. Here’s an interesting statistic: Before the Recovery Act, before I took office, we had the capacity to make less than 2 percent of the world’s lithium ion batteries — less than 2 percent. In the next five years, on the trajectory that we’re now on, we’re going to be able to make 40 percent of the advanced batteries right here in the United States of America. Right here.

So the next time somebody asks you, when you’re at the grocery store, well, what did this Recovery Act do? You can tell them, one of the things it helped do is to expand and catalyze an entire new industry, where the United States of America can gain enormous market share across the globe. And that’s the kind of strategy we need — helping the private sector thrive in entirely new industries, the industries of the future. It’s a strategy that will not only create jobs in the near term, but also sustained growth and opportunity in the long run.

To learn more about the benefits of the Recovery Act, visit our Recovery Act section or visit Recovery.gov.

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President Obama Signs the HIRE Act Jobs Bill

Posted by: Audiegrl

Surrounded by members of Congress, President Barack Obama signs the Hire Act during a ceremony in the Rose Garden at the White House on March 18, 2010 in Washington, DC. The HIRE Act will offer a payroll tax break for businesses that hire unemployed workers and will offer businesses an income tax credit of $1,000 for retaining these employees. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images North America)

USAToday~Acknowledging that government alone can’t solve the nation’s job crisis, President Obama just signed a new $18 billion jobs bill designed to spur hiring by giving tax breaks to small businesses. The bill also includes $20 billion for highway and transit programs.

While this jobs bill is absolutely necessary, it is by no means enough,” Obama said during a sunny Rose Garden bill signing ceremony. “There is a lot more we need to do to spur hiring in the private sector and bring about a full economic recovery; from helping creditworthy small businesses get the loans they need to expand, to offering incentives to make homes and businesses more energy-efficient, to investing in infrastructure so we can put Americans to work doing the work America needs done.”

Obama also urged lawmakers to consider a new estimate from the Congressional Budget Office that the health-care legislation will reduce the federal deficit by $130 billion in the first decade and $1.2 trillion in the next. He said it represented the “most significant effort to reduce the deficit” since the Balanced Budget Act.

I urge every member of Congress to consider this as they prepare for their very important vote this weekend,” Obama said.

More @ USA Today

Full Remarks by President Obama

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President Obama’s White House to Main Street Tour: Savannah, Georgia

Posted by: Audiegrl

Helping Homeowners Invest in Energy-Efficient Homes

President Barack Obama speaks at Savannah Technical College in Savannah, Ga., March 2, 2010. (Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy)

President Barack Obama speaks at Savannah Technical College in Savannah, Ga., March 2, 2010. (Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy)

Earlier today, after touring Savannah Tech, President Obama announced the initiatives for HOMESTAR, a program that offers incentives for people to make their homes more energy-efficient.

The President explained that the new program will save families several hundred of dollars on utilities, make the economy less dependent on fossil fuels, create work for small businesses and contractors, and bring back construction jobs.

Here’s one of the best things about energy efficiency – it turns out that energy-efficient windows or insulation, those things are products that are almost exclusively manufactured right here in the United States of America. It’s very hard to ship windows from China. So a lot of these materials are made right here in America.

Through the HOMESTAR Program, homeowners who make investments for energy-efficiency in their homes will be eligible to receive:

  • Direct rebates for energy-saving investments
  • 50 percent rebates for the cost of each upgrade up to $1500
  • Rebates up to $3000 for those who choose to retrofit their whole homes
  • Guaranteed quality installations through quality assurance providers who would conduct field audits after work is completed
  • Support for financing through State and local governments

President Obama explained that these short-term investments will lead to long-term savings for homeowners and consumers.

Just like a responsible homeowner will invest in their homes in the near term to fortify their economic security in the long term, we’ve got to do the same as a country. It will have some costs on the front end — you buy a new boiler, or you get some insulation, or you get some new windows, that’s going to have an initial cost, and the same is true from a government perspective. And it’s going to be politically difficult to do some of this, but it’s what’s right to plan for our future.
Vodpod videos no longer available.President Obama speaks with students in alternative energy programs at Savannah Technical College on today’s White House to Main Street tour. Vodpod videos no longer available.

President Barack Obama stops to greet workers as he tours the Chatham Steel Company in Savannah, Ga., March 2, 2010. (Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy)

Just before giving a speech in Savannah, GA, President Obama chats with building manufacturers and local contractors about the importance of retrofitting. Around the circle are Mark Andrews of Knauf Insulation, Michael Lawrence of Insulation Systems, Howard Feldman of Coastal Green Building Solutions, Patrick Shay of Green Sweep, and Larry Laseter of MASCO Home Services.
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President Barack Obama sits down for lunch with other customers during a stop at Mrs. Wilkes' Dining Room in Savannah, Ga. March 2, 2010. (Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy)

During his “White House to Main Street” tour today in Savannah Georgia, President Obama made a surprise lunch stop. If there’s one thing better than meeting new folks on the road, it’s meeting new folks out on the road and having them cook you up some of the best food in the country. So it was when the President sat down with some of the regulars at the famous Mrs. Wilkes’ Boarding House restaurant in Savannah, Georgia today. They were polite enough to offer not to ask him any questions so he could relax, an offer he jokingly declined: “How often you gonna have lunch with the President? Might as well ask some questions.”

Please visit our friends at Obama Foodorama for details on the lunch menu and more info about this historic restaurant.

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Creating New Jobs by Investing in High-Speed Rail

posted by GeoT

President Obama, joined by Vice President Biden, announces $8 billion in Recovery Act funding for high-speed rail projects that will provide faster, more energy-efficient travel between cities and create new jobs for American workers. The announcement came during a Town Hall meeting in Tampa, FL.
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Read the transcript HERE

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Reality Check: Obama’s Winning Streak On Hill Unprecedented

posted by GeoT
1st of a two part report– Part 1
In his first year in office, President Obama did better even than legendary arm-twister Lyndon Johnson in winning congressional votes on issues where he took a position

NPR, by Don Gonyea
The new Congressional Quarterly study gives Obama a higher mark than any other president since it began scoring presidential success rates in Congress more than five decades ago. And that was in a year where Obama tackled how to deal with Afghanistan, Iraq, an expanding terrorist threat, the economic crisis and battles over health care.

Unprecedented Success Rate

Obama has been no different from his predecessors in that he’s always ready to send a firm message to the other end of Pennsylvania Avenue as he “urges members of Congress” to come together and act. All presidents demand specific action by Congress — or at least they ask for it. But when you look at the votes of 2009 in which Obama made his preference clear, his success rate was unprecedented, according to John Cranford of Congressional Quarterly.

“His success was 96.7 percent on all the votes where we said he had a clear position in both the House and the Senate. That’s an extraordinary number,” Cranford says.

The previous high scores were held by Lyndon Johnson in 1965, with 93 percent, and Dwight Eisenhower, who scored 89 percent in 1953. Cranford notes that George W. Bush’s score hit the high 80s in 2001, the year of the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center. But Obama surpassed them all, Cranford says.

read more:

Listen here: NPR Morning Edition Jan 11, 2010: Obama’s Winning Streak On Hill Unprecedented

Part 2: CQ: 2009 Was The Most Partisan Year Ever

NPR by Andrea Seabrook
A year ago as a new president took office, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi proclaimed that the United States must be governed from the middle.

“You have to bring people together to reach consensus on solutions that are sustainable and acceptable to the American people,” she said. It had been a rough eight years of partisanship and polarization under George W. Bush. Even Republican House leader John Boehner said if the Democrats wanted bipartisanship, he’d work with them.

It didn’t work out that way

read more:

Listen here: NPR All Things Considered Jan 11, 2010: The Most Partisan Year

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New Investments in Jobs and Clean Energy

President Obama announces $2.3 billion in Advanced Energy Manufacturing Tax Credits that are designed to foster job creation and growth in the clean energy sector.

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