While President Obama did mention a green economy, green jobs, high-speed rail, and climate legislation like Green Guide thought he would, he also revealed some potentially brown aspects of his energy agenda.
In discussing his energy plans, he brought up investment in nuclear energy, offshore drilling for oil and natural gas, and “clean” coal as ways to create green energy jobs–a move I thought would prompt criticism from environmental groups.
However, most environmental organizations that released statements about last night’s speech lauded the president–and mostly for prodding the Senate to pass meaningful climate legislation. Greenpeace was the notable exception, saying in its statement, “It was … disappointing to hear the President promote coal, offshore drilling, and nuclear power, since these forms of dirty energy are expensive distractions that stall the fight against climate change.”
Groups such as the Natural Resources Defense Council and the Environmental Defense Fund, League of Conservation Voters, National Wildlife Federation, and Alliance for Climate Protection were among those supporting Obama’s speech.
Business organizations such as the American Wind Energy Association, American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity, and the Nuclear Energy Institute were obviously pleased with Obama’s speech, focusing on the jobs their respective types of energy create. They estimate job gains in the thousands.