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Extend Stimulus Clean Energy Provisions

As Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) continues putting together a climate and clean energy bill he should include provisions that will extend and build off Recovery Act programs.

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The Council of Economic Advisers, or CEA, released its report last week on the economic and job-creation impact of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. ARRA saved or created between 2.5 million and 3.6 million jobs as of the second quarter of 2010, the report found. About 827,000 of those were in the clean energy sector.

Continuing to create employment opportunities in clean energy helps to address the twin threats of a jobless recovery and of global warming. But the federal stimulus package was not designed to last past 2012. It is necessary to craft long-term policy solutions that provide certainty and stability to investors, markets, and American companies to keep their doors open post-ARRA.

As Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) continues putting together a climate and clean energy bill he should include provisions that will extend and build off ARRA programs. Direct public investment programs and strong market incentives to encourage homeowners and commercial and industrial property managers to invest in energy efficiency through measures such as the proposed HOME STAR and Building Star programs will create good-paying jobs in construction. Including federal financing programs along the lines of those included in ARRA will ensure that investments in clean energy projects continue far past 2010. Finally, legislation should extend incentives for clean energy and advanced technology vehicle manufacturing and provide for rebuilding the U.S. electricity grid to support reliance on clean, safe, domestic energy.

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