Green Jobs

Could climate change denialism tank the U.S. economy?

Even as South Korea is creating jobs in renewable energy, the U.S. is falling behind in green tech. While other countries are encouraging growth in industries like solar power and home efficiency retrofitting, the U.S. is still bickering over whether climate change is for real. So instead of taking advantage of these growing technologies to boost the economy, we're importing them. Smart. A recent report by the Pew Charitable Trusts found that while the clean technology sector was booming in Europe, Asia and Latin America, its competitive position was “at risk” in the United States because of “uncertainties surrounding key …

Green Jobs

The untimely death of a green-collar job trainee — and one graduate’s triumph

Family photo: Lawrence Albert “Jahon” Craig Gadlin with his partner, Latina Cash, and son, Jahon Jr.Lawrence Albert “Jahon” Craig Gadlin, a 23-year-old father in Richmond, Calif., was outside repairing a car with friends on May 13, 2010, when a red minivan drove past and fired dozens of bullets, killing him and two others. I sat in a pew at Gadlin’s memorial service with his classmates from the East Bay Green Job Corps, 15 young women and men I’d been following for a few months. Mourners sang and reached for God as a young man helped Gadlin’s mother take slow, heavy …

Cleantech

What’s next for the enviro-business coalition that defeated California’s Prop 23?

Now that we’ve put together some green muscle, what will we do with it?Photo: Denis GilesMuch of the green movement has been mounting a rearguard fight in Washington to fend off attempts to gut the U.S. EPA in the wake of the Republican sweep of the 2010 elections. California, as usual, is heading down a different road. The enviro-business coalition that defeated Prop 23, Texas oil companies’ attempt to derail the state’s global-warming law, is stepping up effort to push lawmakers to expand California’s climate-change efforts. First, the No on 23 campaign led by billionaire hedge-fund manager Tom Steyer resurfaced …

The budget deal slows innovation and slashes rail, green jobs, and cleanup programs

This year’s budget negotiation hacked away at a lot of important programs.Photo: Dan ConwayCross-posted from the Wonk Room. The Republican slash-and-burn budget accepted by President Obama to avoid a government shutdown will put our fragile economic recovery in jeopardy. Moreover, the cuts are ideologically motivated, preserving massive subsidies for fossil fuel polluters while knocking out support for a cleaner, more innovative economic future. The cuts [PDF] and funding prohibitions from Obama’s budget request include: Environmental Protection Agency: $1.6 billion, including $50 million from science and technology programs, $110 million from environmental programs and management, $4 million from buildings, $10 million from Superfund, $797 …

Climate Policy

Climate hawks fight GOP efforts to shut down the clean energy economy

Cross-posted from the Wonk Room. During yesterday’s debate on the Upton-Inhofe bill (H.R. 910) to block climate pollution rules, Democrats who support clean energy manufacturing debunked conservative myths about the green economy. Reps. Mike Doyle (D-Pa.) and Tim Ryan (D-Ohio) discussed their amendment to study the economic impact to American competitiveness of abolishing climate standards while the rest of the world wins the future. With the help of Rep. Jay Inslee (D-Wash.), they debunked the myths of a hapless Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.). Inslee decried the eagerness of the GOP to “shut down the government”: It is deeply disappointing that …

Infrastructure

Bob Herbert’s savvy advocacy for better infrastructure will be missed

Bob Herbert.Photo: Damon Winter/The New York TimesCross-posted from New Deal 2.0. Dear Mr. Herbert, I was sad to hear that you will no longer be writing for the op-ed page of the New York Times. Your critical perspective on the class war being waged against the middle and working class and the poor, on the waste and recklessness of our wars, and on the wrenching struggles of ordinary Americans made you an invaluable voice. But I want to suggest that even more important than those insights was your consistent attempts to point to a better future, and the path to getting …

Keeping it clean

This year’s Cleantech Forum: Less sexy, more efficient

Looking for new ways to get in the cleantech game.Photo: emilydickinsonridesabmxIt’s a rite of spring, the annual Cleantech Forum in San Francisco. Venture capitalists, startup entrepreneurs, and various hangers-on gather at an upscale hotel to network, pitch, and hopefully clinch some deals. There are scores of these green biz conferences, of course, and after awhile they all tend to blend together in a mashup of hype and prognosticating. Still, the Cleantech Forum is one I make an effort to attend, and not just because it’s a short BART ride from Berkeley. Over the years, I’ve found the confab to be …

plan on it

How does China’s 12th Five-Year Plan address energy and the environment?

China’s got ambition.Cross-posted from the World Resources Institute. The post was written by Deborah Seligsohn, WRI’s principal advisor on climate and energy in Beijing, and Angel Hsu, doctoral student at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. The draft of China’s much-anticipated 12th Five-Year Plan was released this Saturday, March 5 at the opening session of the National People’s Congress (NPC). The plan will actually be brought to a vote at the close of the session later this week. While there may be some changes to the plan, in past years these have not been large. The 118-page draft …

... but they'll go green if they it makes them more greenbacks

Why companies don’t care about climate change

Businesses would be more interested in saving trees if money grew on them.Cross-posted from TriplePundit. In 2009, I cofounded a company called CO2 IMPACT to develop high quality carbon offset projects in the Americas. While I have a Ph.D. in business, I have frequently been too focused on my values to justify the business case for a lower carbon footprint. I guess I care too much about what we are doing to the planet and what we are leaving behind for my son, Mateo. Along the way, I have learned a painful lesson that hopefully can help other aspiring climate …

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