Written by Bob Keefe, Natural Resources Defense Council
Skimming the headlines or listening to the political rhetoric from some in Washington, a casual consumer might think the clean energy industry is dead, dying or some sort of scam.
Truth is, clean energy companies of all sorts, from manufacturers to power companies, are adding jobs on a daily basis in communities across the country.
We’d like to point out two new resources designed to help you tell the whole story about the clean energy industry to your readers and viewers. Together, they let you get details by state, county and even congressional district or zip code about clean energy projects happening in your community today. They also underscore the potential for clean energy in your community tomorrow.
*At http://www.nrdc.org/energy/renewables, you’ll find a new NRDC site dedicated to renewable energy that debuts today. It features a unique interactive map showing every major existing or planned renewable energy project in every state in the country – whether it’s a solar installation, a wind farm or a biofuels operation. You can also click a button to see the renewable energy potential for your state, county or zip code.
*A new weekly clean energy jobs newsletter and web site created by NRDC’s sister organization, Environmental Entrepreneurs (E2), is now also live at www.e2.org/cleanjobs. It shows new job announcements and expansions by region, state and congressional district that are happening every week, countering claims that the clean energy industry isn’t viable or growing.
The two sites provide unique information specifically for your readership and viewers.
This week’s edition of www.e2.org/cleanjobs, for instance, contains details on 26 clean energy projects in 15 states that could generate thousands of new American jobs.
Some of these projects, it turns out, happen to be in the home states and districts of some of the most vocal critics of our country’s clean energy policies.
Among the clean energy job announcements included in this week’s edition, for instance, are several projects in the home state of Senate Republican Leader Sen. Mitch McConnell and the Tea Party’s Sen. Rand Paul. An innovative biofuels project in Louisville, Ky., for instance, is expected to save 340 jobs at three companies. Elsewhere in Kentucky, vehicle efficiency projects at Johnson Controls and Hitachi Automotive Systems America will create more than 100 other new jobs.
Last week’s www.e2.org/cleanjobs tally included the announcement of a biomass plant that will create more than 665 construction jobs in Gainesville, Fla., near the home of Republican Rep. Cliff Stearns – even as Rep. Stearns continues to hold hearings on the validity of clean energy support in America.
At the new NRDC renewables site, meanwhile, click on the home counties of Republican Rep. Darrell Issa – who has been leading the charge against clean energy in Congress – and you’ll find a wide range of existing and proposed renewable energy projects, including wind farms, solar installations and geothermal projects.
You can also see on NRDC’s renewable energy map that there’s huge potential for wind, solar and other renewable energy in Rep. Issa’s district – if only he and others in Congress don’t kill off national energy programs in their rush to politicize recent clean energy company failures.
Together, the two renewable energy sites should put to rest criticism that the more than 2.7 million clean economy jobs in America aren’t real, and show that we need to keep supporting clean energy development in America if we want to keep creating new, 21st Century jobs across our country.