News

President-elect Obama Ready to Put Americans to Work with Green Jobs – but Where is Texas?

January 8th, 2009

Today, the president-elect gave an economic stimulus speech, laying out priorities for investment in the work of America. Our national partner, the national League of Conservation Voters applauded President-elect Obama’s speech and noted:

“America’s economy is ailing and the prognosis for the planet is dire. The cure for both these ills is a new clean energy future. Putting millions of people to work installing solar panels, producing wind turbines and making two million homes more efficient is just what the doctor ordered. President-elect Obama‚Äôs prescriptions will address the twin challenges of an ailing economy and the threat of global warming.”

Indeed.

Texas companies are eyeing the prospect of a massive federal stimulus, hoping for tax breaks to encourage consumer spending and home building.

What could really be helpful is federal investment in the infrastructure needed for a green economy – the power grid and renewable energy generation, new transportation options that move folks away from gas guzzlers and toward more efficient cars running on improved roadways, or even non-car options like high speed rail, as is being suggested in other parts of the country, and – most importantly – help in creation of new, green jobs that will allow Texas to continue to be a world energy leader.

This session, TxDOT is up for sunset review. That means leaders in Austin have a chance to make changes to our state’s transportation agency that result in prioritizing better forms of transit over more roads. Federal stimulus + new priorities for Texas = a solution that creates jobs, improves mobility and makes a big dent in Texas air quality problems caused by auto traffic jammed up on our highways.