Thursday, September 20, 2012

President Clinton on What the American Public Needs to Know about Renewable Energy

As reviewed in a Renewable Energy World article, former President Bill Clinton made some very interesting points at Solar Power International 2012. Clinton was the keynote speaker for the September event where he addressed what the American public needs to know about renewable energy. His speech focused on the topics of government investment, the environment, economics, jobs, Solyndra, subsidies and the future of energy in America.

 Clinton emphasized the importance of private-public cooperation in the development of America's renewable energy potential. He mentioned the dire need for the solar industry to set the record straight regarding the economic and environmental benefits of renewable energy.

Clinton also said that most Americans do not know that Germany has gained 300,000 jobs from solar energy. He added his view on the much misunderstood Solyndra debacle, explaining that it was simply a failed start-up that couldn’t get to scale before it ran out of money.

One of the most interesting things that Clinton had to say concerned the amount of money given to non-renewable sources of energy. "Most Americans don’t know that $22 are given in subsidies for fossil and nuclear energy for every one dollar given to renewables," he said. "These are things people need to know.”

Clean energy is not just a race between China and US, Clinton said, but rather it’s about people who are thinking about the future. The solar industry is in the "future business" according to the former president.“You represent the future,” Clinton told the audience, “you are going to win this battle, the question is when and where and how.”

© 2012, Richard Matthews. All rights reserved.

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