Initial discussion is heavily weighted toward retrofitting homes, and major retailers such as Home Depot, whose CEO is at the table now, are being seen by the administration as key players. If federal dollars go to encourage home owners to install solar panels, for example, then construction-related companies will benefit and the thinking is they will have to hire workers. These jobs could hit the economy quickly.
Manufacturers of green products or green components want incentives to keep jobs in America. Construction firms don’t want to continue to jump through bureaucratic hoops and permitting delays to have to install green systems, and businesses and investors want any federal dollars for green projects to come quickly so no business is waiting months to be reimbursed.
Investors asking for tax credit for utilities to get in on the energy efficiency game, not just tax credits to consumers.
Obama just walked in with a reality check: “We have fiscal constraints that are tough.”
The president is looking for support from businesses to get his green agenda moving.
“There’s going to be an energy debate in the country,” he said. “A divergent group, particularly those not the usual subjects, like business and industry, just making a very strong stance so the American people understand it’s not a job killer.” But green investments will create jobs, he maintained.
What he heard from the green discussion group:
“How can we make sure shovel ready actually means shovel ready,” he said about the many delays that have plagued infrastructure improvements to date. “And how we leverage the private sector to boost our infrastructure spending.”
“We also heard terrific ideas about how weatherization and energy efficieny promises immediate impact on the on the ground, spur enormous amounts of business opportunities for the clean sector.”