On Monday the Environmental Law and PolicyCenter and 25x'25 Alliance presented a package of recommendations to bolster the economy and create jobs to Congress and the incoming Obama Administration. Their proposal would accelerate the development of and markets for, wind and solar power, advanced biofuels production, biomass power and geothermal energy as a means to stimulate the economy. The Federal Farm Bill's Energy Title would be a primary focus along with related tax credits.
The recommendations also focus on investing in programs that are currently under funded such as the Rural Energy for America Program that will put people back to work while improving environmental quality. These programs are green job generators and long-term growth creators because they require skilled labor for manufacturing components, construction and operation.
The University of Tennessee's Department of Agricultural Economics has conducted a national study that shows the potential benefit of these recommendations. If policies and incentives are put in place to allow 25% of the nation's energy needs be provided by renewable resources, an estimated $700 billion in new, annual economic activity would be generated, and 4 million to 5 million new jobs would be created.
ELPC recommends increasing funding for the Farm Bill Energy Title, expanding successful clean energy bonds, and extending and improving clean energy tax credits.
By investing in these programs that will boost employment and generate tax revenue for local communities, ELPC says we can restore rural economies and improve the environment. For a complete list of recommendations, click HERE.