Friday, November 9, 2012

Like Mark Twain, Clean Energy is Alive and Well

Happily, clean energy is like Mark Twain whose "reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated."

Despite what David Brooks thinks.  Clean energy defenders thoroughly countered his recent attempt at clean energy's eulogy.  

That at least several influential people responded to Brooks's funeral dirge in the first place is reason enough for hope.  It's clear that clean energy is a business not a cause. 

Stephen Cowell, CEO of Conservation Services Group, provided several great points not least of which is that we need renewable energy in our future; calling it unnecessary is folly:

"We may be able to extend our fossil fuel addiction by another 30 years, but we can't afford to close our eyes to long-term reality in the face of short-term economic conditions. We must continue supporting renewable energy and efficient technologies, or the planet, us, our children and future generations will suffer." 

Cowell also challenged the so-called demise of clean energy investments:

"Despite a few that have not fared well, many clean energy investments are paying off. At a 90 percent success rate, they're far outpacing the success of private, venture-capital-funded companies and are employing thousands.

In terms of the loan recipients, the federal government has a very respectable track record. Of the 33 companies that received federal support, only three have gone out of business. This is hardly a "wasteful disappointment." We should celebrate these success stories, instead of allowing them to be overshadowed by the Solyndras of the industry."

Read his whole post here.

Meanwhile, Frances Moore Lappe, author of  Diet for a Small Planet, finds clean energy's strong heartbeat:

"Even here in the U.S., with our comparatively timid renewable energy platform, analysis by the Brookings Institution shows that despite the recession, from 2008-2010, US jobs in clean energy -- like smart grids, solar PV and wind -- outpaced our employment growth in other sectors by about two to one, thanks in part to the federal stimulus.

What's more, clean, technology-related jobs already outnumber fossil fuel jobs, even though those dirty jobs have benefited from billions of government support annually over many decades."

Read her whole post here.

As I'm sure Mark Twain toasted his own health (with much humor), I'll raise the cup to clean energy.  Long live clean energy.

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