President Barack Obama put a green spin on Tuesday’s address to autoworkers at the GM assembly plant in Warren, Ohio.
The president sounded confident that the rescued, retooled, reinvented, more or less government-owned GM would be “good for American workers, good for American manufacturing, and good for America’s economy.” And it may just be a good thing for the global climate too.
“For too long,” the president told the autoworkers, “our auto companies faced uncertain and conflicting fuel economy standards. That made it difficult for you to plan down the road. That’s why, today, we are launching — for the first time in history — a new national standard aimed at both increasing gas mileage and decreasing greenhouse gas pollution for all new cars and trucks sold in America. This action will give our auto companies some long-overdue clarity, stability, and predictability.” And hopefully some welcome fresh air for the rest of us.
The president pointed to the “unlikely allies” that came together to make an agreement on new fuel standards possible. “Automakers, the UAW, environmental advocates, Democrats and Republicans, California and more than a dozen other states — all of them pledging to set aside the quarrels of the past for the sake of the future.”
As for the future of those Warren, Ohio, autoworkers, well, it’s looking a little brighter these days. According to the president, “[T]his plant is about to shift into higher gear. 150 of your coworkers came back to work yesterday. More than 1,000 will be coming back to work in less than three weeks as production of the Cobalt ramps up. And next year, this plant will begin production of the Chevy Cruze, a new car that will get more than 40 miles per gallon.”
“You’re doing your part to move us forward and make sure that the high-quality, well-engineered, safe and fuel-efficient cars of the future will be built where they always have been — right here in Ohio, right here across the Midwest, right here in America.”
It’s yet another example, said the president, that his administration is “fighting for an America where clean energy generates green jobs — jobs that can’t be outsourced; jobs that help free us from the grip of foreign oil; jobs that make sure the cars of the future and the technologies that power them are made right here in the U.S.A.”