For Immediate Release: January 15, 2009
Contact: David Willett, 202-675-6698
House Proposal for Recovery Package Priorities Clean Energy
Washington, DC: Sierra Club is encouraged by Congress' proposal today of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 which reflects President-Elect Obama's vision of an economic recovery plan that recognizes the vital role of clean energy. The bill makes an important down payment on solutions that will transform America's economy and lead to a clean energy future that will benefit generations to come.
President-elect Obama laid out a bold plan for stimulating our struggling economy that focuses on clean energy technologies and investment in green jobs as a key driver for economic recovery. His transition team worked over a period of weeks with Senate and House leaders to help shape this massive spending proposal. Today, the House unveiled the outline for a $825 billion, two-year economic stimulus package.
Some highlights of the proposed bill include:
- $32 billion to transform the nation’s energy transmission, distribution, and production systems by allowing for a smarter and better grid and focusing investment in renewable technology
- $16 billion to repair public housing and make key energy efficiency retrofits.
- $6 billion to weatherize modest-income homes.
- $31 billion to modernize federal and other public infrastructure with investments that lead to long term energy cost savings.
- $19 billion for clean water, flood control, and environmental restoration investments.
- $10 billion for transit and rail to reduce traffic congestion and gas consumption.
These initiatives are a win-win for a strong economy and a healthier environment. By focusing on critical investments in repair and modernization of infrastructure, and boosting production of renewable energy, they will create good jobs here in America and reduce our dependence on dirtier energy sources like oil and coal.
As this plan moves forward, it is vitally important that the government focuses on investing in newer, cleaner, more efficient technology and not wasting money on costly, business-as-usual approaches like new coal plants, dams, or "highways to nowhere." We look forward to working with the new President and the Congress to pass this plan and keep it focused on the priorities that will provide short-term economic recovery and long term economic stability and a cleaner, safer world.