PEBO touted his American Recovery and Reinvestment Plan and its green stimulus components in Bedford Heights, Ohio at the Cardinal Fastener & Specialty Company:
I want to start by thanking the folks here at Cardinal Fastener for the tour you just gave me. The story of this company — which began building wind turbine parts just two years ago, and is now poised to make half its earnings that way — is that a renewable energy economy isn’t some pie-in-the-sky, far-off future. It’s happening all across America right now. It’s providing alternatives to foreign oil now. It can create millions of additional jobs and entire new industries if we act right now.
Here are the part of his powerful remarks that focus on energy:
That starts with new, clean sources of energy. We know that the possibilities here are limitless. Here in Ohio and across America, we’ve seen old factories become new clean energy producers. We’ve seen entrepreneurs turning solar energy into electricity, and corn and soybeans into bio-fuels. Our scientists and engineers are hard at work developing cars that use less gas, homes and appliances that require less energy, schools and offices that are greener and more efficient than ever before.
But we also know that we are nowhere near realizing the full potential of their work. Take the example of wind power alone: I’m told that if we don’t act now, because of the economic downturn, half of the wind projects planned for 2009 could wind up being abandoned. Think about that. Think about all the businesses that wouldn’t come to be, all the jobs that wouldn’t be created, all the clean energy we wouldn’t produce.
And think of what’s happening in countries like Spain, Germany and Japan, where they’re making real investments in renewable energy. They’re surging ahead of us, poised to take the lead in these new industries.
This isn’t because they’re smarter than us, or work harder than us, or are more innovative than we are. It’s because their governments have harnessed their people’s hard work and ingenuity with bold investments — investments that are paying off in good, high-wage jobs — jobs they won’t lose to other countries.
There is no reason we can’t do the same thing right here in America. That’s why, as part of our Recovery and Reinvestment plan, we’re committing to double the production of renewable energy in the next three years, and to modernize more than 75% of federal buildings and improve the energy efficiency of two million American homes.
In the process, we’ll put nearly half a million people to work building wind turbines and solar panels; constructing fuel-efficient cars and buildings; and developing the new energy technologies that will lead to new jobs, more savings, and a cleaner, safer planet in the bargain.
Here at Cardinal Fastener, that could mean going from operating at 50 percent capacity to 90 percent capacity and creating even more good, made-in-America jobs right here in Ohio.
Now, given the magnitude of the challenges we face, none of this will come easy. Recovery won’t happen overnight, and it’s likely that, even with these measures, things will get worse before they get better….
But if anyone doubts that we can dig ourselves out of this hole, I invite them to come here to Ohio and look what you’ve done at Cardinal Fastener. I know it hasn’t been easy — and it hasn’t been without risk. But you’ve set your sights on the future, and you haven’t looked back. In an economy that’s losing jobs, you’re creating them. And they’re the kind of jobs that don’t just support families and sustain communities — but also help transform our economy, spurring growth not just today, but for decades to come.
That’s what we’ve always done in moments like this. We’ve looked ahead to the next big idea, that next new breakthrough. We’ve experimented and innovated, and when we’ve failed, we’ve picked ourselves up and tried again. And I know that if we can summon that determination and that great American spirit once again, we will meet the challenges of our time and build a better future for our children.
Finally, a President who gets it.
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