Greentech Industries Imperiled by Anti-Stimulus, Removal of Federal Supports

By: Friday September 21, 2012 5:00 pm

One of the highlights of the stimulus package, according to Michael Grunwald’s book The New New Deal, was the $90 billion in investment in green energy. This kick-started a moribund industry and more than doubled the output of renewables as a percentage of overall energy.

What it did not do is secure the place of renewables in the US energy mix.


Auto Industry Comeback: Creating the Conditions for Success

By: Thursday April 5, 2012 6:00 am

Brad Plumer has a well-reported article about the domestic auto industry’s comeback, and how it derived from ending the failed business model of selling more and more gas guzzlers, and responding to consumer desires for lighter, more fuel-efficient cars. The key is the right support and nudges from a government that actually cared about their survival and in what form.

Occupy Innovation

By: Friday January 27, 2012 3:10 pm

If the US fought for the post-carbon economy the way it fights for nebulous state-building goals in foreign wars, the future would be brighter, cleaner, safer and cheaper, with more jobs and perhaps – because it would need to secure less of that foreign oil -fewer wars. If the country built new classrooms with the same urgency it built armored vehicles, more American teens could be choosing between colleges instead of choosing between minimum and sub-minimum wage jobs – and fewer would eventually need public assistance. If the government spent more on blackboards and less on bullets, it would create more jobs today and more innovation in the future.

Report: Obama to Call for New Investments in State of the Union

By: Saturday January 22, 2011 11:00 am

I’d expect several trial balloons about what the President will discuss in the State of the Union, and we already have one informed by his recent speeches: “competitiveness.” I agree with both Krugman and Robert Reich on this; if competitiveness is used as a frame to call for new investments, particularly in infrastructure and education, while fending off right-wing austerity, then great. If it’s a way to suggest that manufacturing companies should cut payrolls, or America should pass a bunch of corporate-written free trade agreements, or that we should do whatever’s on the mind of the Jeffrey Immelts of the world, then, well, not so great.

“Grand Bargain” of Clean Energy Research Feels More Like Lip Service

By: Wednesday October 13, 2010 4:55 pm

I think that lowering the cost of clean energy is necessary and desirable, and that research should go forward. Just don’t expect a lot of cooperation on it. More likely, you’ll hear about taxpayer money financing pie-in-the-sky “liberal dreams.” In other words, expect more lip service.

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