An opinion writer at the Houston Chronicle says:

Congress missed a major opportunity with the stimulus package. They could have invested in something that would have been good for the consumer (encouraging energy savings), the environment (reducing emissions) and the economy (stimulating development of products that represent our future).

The magic elixir?

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Energy efficiency is the best thing we can do for our economy and environment right now. Instead of $600 once for every consumer, how about $100 to every family that replaces incandescent bulbs with florescent? Or $1,000 to every family that buys a car that meets future CAFE standards today? Or perhaps $500 to every family that improves its home insulation by 20 percent?

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These investments would cost no more than the present stimulus and save consumers at least as much (probably more in future electricity, heating and fuel bills) while stimulating industries that lead toward a better long-term economic future.

At least one commenter is unimpressed:

While those of us who have already replaced bulbs, insulated, replaced windows and doors, upgraded to a high efficiency heat pump, purchased a front load washer get nothing. Yeah, let’s reward all those that arrive late to the party. Thanks, but no thanks.


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