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Press Room:  For Immediate Release 
Explore, Enjoy and Protect the Planet

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: February 17, 2010
CONTACT: Josh Dorner, 202.675.2384

Sierra Club Celebrates Recovery Act's Success One Year On
Sierra Club Calls It "The Most Important Clean Energy Initiative in History"

Washington, D.C.--Today is the one year anniversary of the passage of the American Recovery & Reinvestment Act.  As the New York Times reported yesterday, the legislation has been an overwhelming success, having prevented 2 million Americans from being added to the nation's jobless rolls.  63,000 clean energy jobs were created by the $5 billion (out of approximately $90 billion total) in clean energy investments spent under the Recovery Act so far.  It is estimated that, in total, the Recovery Act's clean energy investments will create 719,600 job-years (one person employed for one year) through 2012. 

Statement of Carl Pope, Sierra Club Executive Director

"The Recovery Act is the most important clean energy initiative in American history.  It made a huge down payment on America's clean energy future and we will be reaping the rewards for years to come.  The amount of funding devoted to clean energy and environmental programs is without precedent and has helped to reverse eight years of dithering, denial, and delay on clean energy and the environment.

"Without the Recovery Act, the wind industry--among countless others--would have been decimated and millions more Americans would have lost their jobs.  People and important projects in every state have benefited from the Recovery Act.  It's unfortunate that some people driven by petty politics continue to deny that this bill helped save us from another Great Depression and continues to be instrumental in putting food on the table and paying the mortgage for millions of Americans. 

"President Obama is working hard to fix our economy, but he can't do it alone.  With millions of Americans still out of work, it's time for the Senate to get serious about passing comprehensive clean energy and climate legislation.  In addition to creating millions of new jobs, clean energy legislation can revitalize American industry, create a new a middle class, and put our economy back on the path to long-term, sustained prosperity. 

"The Senate must find a way to overcome the obstructionism that has crippled it and is preventing us from dealing with the many challenges before us.  Without action soon, we risk losing the race to build the clean energy industries that will fuel economic growth in the 21st century.  China is halfway down the mountain and we haven't even found the chair lift yet."

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