What’s in a name? Well apparently a lot if you believe the Center for American Progress (CAP). The CAP is saying that President Obama’s American Recovery and Reinvestment Act would have been “the single most important clean energy legislation our history,” if it had simply been branded as an energy imitative.
The first big number is $2.3 trillion, which is the projected growth expected in the clean energy technology sector over the next decade. The report also revealed that clean energy investments and programs have already “saved or created” 63,000 jobs and, by next year, could create more than 700,000 jobs. Because of the “stimulus bill,” as it is commonly known, more than 300,000 low-income families are saving an average of $400 a year on their energy bills, thanks to weatherization programs. Green job training got $500 million in government funds thanks to the law, and inner city green job growth is reportedly at 11% according to the CAP report. Of the other large numbers in the report, the fact that the bill included $80 billion for clean energy programs that can be used to leverage as much as $150 billion from private investments seemed particularly noteworthy.
The CAP’s claim came as Obama addressed students at Georgetown University to explain new plans for reducing America’s dependency on foreign oil. In that speech, Obama outlined a few achievable goals, while also touting the success of clean energy investments and programs to encourage energy efficiency. Both of these efforts were significant parts of the recovery act.
So what do you think? Would you feel better about the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act if it were simply known as the “New Energy Act”? Let me know in the comments section below.