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Coalition Calls for Passage of Clean Energy Bill

On the heels of President Obama's speech this week in response to the BP oil disaster in which he called for clean energy legislation, a new coalition of renewable energy, energy efficiency, and biofuels organizations is pushing for the U.S. Senate to quickly pass comprehensive energy legislation that will create millions of American jobs and decrease U.S. reliance on fossil fuels.

The letter, copied below, was sent to all members of the Senate today as a followup to the President’s call to action on energy. The coalition letter urges the Senate to move quickly with legislation promoting energy efficiency, renewable energy and biofuels. 

The coalition said that these policies will add millions of new, American jobs, protect our environment, and make the United States more energy independent and secure.

The letter states:

We urge that the Senate move quickly to consider legislation promoting energy efficiency, renewable energy generation, and biofuels, along with associated manufacturing opportunities. Such a policy would add millions of American jobs and utilize our own domestic, clean, inexhaustible, and rapidly deployable resources. Acting now will stimulate construction and operations jobs as well as manufacturing and supply chains, rather than passively losing these jobs to other countries. 

A series of inconsistent and unstable policies have cost America its leadership in renewable energy and energy efficiency manufacturing and production. Attracting manufacturing will take a concerted effort, as evidenced by the actions being taken by our competitors, but America’s workforce, skills, and market are well suited for global leadership if stable policies are put in place. Important programs affecting renewable energy industries, energy efficiency initiatives and biofuels programs are all due to expire this year. Many of the jobs these industries support could be lost permanently to other countries. Many renewable manufacturers have almost ceased receiving orders because of the uncertainty of a long term policy.  

Enacting policy now is urgent. Ensuring steady growth of the industries that will solve our climate, water, and waste challenges will be a critical way to address not only near-term employment challenges but our long-term environmental and energy security goals. Renewable energy, energy efficiency, and biofuels can make a significant down payment on carbon pollution targets. These sources are rapidly deployable today, immediately producing jobs, energy security, and environmental benefits. 

The time has come for Congress to enact legislation providing long-term support for energy efficiency, renewable energy and biofuels. It is essential for American jobs, our national security, and the environment.

The members of the coalition include:  the Alliance to Save Energy, the American Wind Energy Association, the Business Council for Sustainable Energy, the Biomass Power Association, Growth Energy, the Energy Recovery Council, the Geothermal Energy Association, the National Hydropower Association, and the Solar Energy Industries Association.

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