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Obama Focuses on Wind, Solar Energy

President-elect Barack Obama spent part of his Jan. 8 speech at George Mason University in Fairfax, Va., discussing alternative energy, specifically doubling production over the next three years.

“We will modernize more than 75 [percent] of federal buildings and improve the energy efficiency of two million American homes, saving consumers and taxpayers billions on our energy bills,” Obama said, according to his change.gov Web site. “In the process, we will put Americans to work in new jobs that pay well and can’t be outsourced – jobs building solar panels and wind turbines; constructing fuel-efficient cars and buildings; and developing the new energy technologies that will lead to even more jobs, more savings, and a cleaner, safer planet in the bargain.”

This is a significant follow-up to a main part of his campaign agenda and a sign that he’s not going to waste any time focusing on the environment.

In Tulsa, Okla., a solar products company promoted its own product in conjunction with Obama’s speech. Matt Wilkens and his wife, Lana, owners of EnergyWise Systems, installed six solar panels in a one kilowatt system on the south side of their roof. The couple announced that they have enjoyed savings of about 30 to 40 percent of their electrical usage.

And in Chicago, Obama’s home turf, one company took the opportunity to make its own green announcement – even though it had nothing to do with wind or solar energy. Chicago’s Commonwealth Edison Company (ComEd), added 50 Prius electric plug-ins and hybrids to its already-green fleet that tops 2,100. In its press release, the company stated that “plug-in electric vehicles and smart charging technology are enabled by building the Smart Grid of the future, an initiative ComEd is actively working on in collaboration with the Illinois Commerce Commission and other stakeholders.”

ComEd’s green fleet is one of many environmental initiatives that support Exelon 2020, a comprehensive strategy announced earlier this year by ComEd’s parent company. The goal of Exelon 2020 is to reduce, offset or displace more than 15 million metric tons of greenhouse gas emitted by its family of companies and customers.

More signs that brighter, and greener, times are ahead.

Image Credit: Richard Masoner at Flickr under a Creative Commons license

Written by Rob Yunich

Rob Yunich is a Web-savvy writer with 10 years of professional communications experience. Rob is a freelance writer, editor and blogger who is a proud graduate of Syracuse University. He's also a big fan of sports and reality TV as well as an avid chef.

Learn more about Rob at robyunich.com, or read one of his blogs: Storming the Crease and Random Reality Thoughts.

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  1. It would cost the equivalent of 60 cents a gallon to charge and drive an electric car.The electricity to charge the car could come from solar or wind generated electricity.If all gasoline cars,trucks,and suv’s instead had plug-in electric drive trains, the amount of electricity needed to replace gasoline is about equal to the estimated wind energy potential of the state of N.D.This past year the high cost of fuel so seriously damaged our economy and society that the ripple effects will be felt for years to come.Why not invest in setting up some alternative energy projects on a national basis, create clean cheap electricity,create millions of badly needed new green collar jobs, and get out from under our dependence on foreign oil.What a win-win situation that would be. There is a great new book out called The Manhattan Project of 2009 Energy Independence NOW by Jeff Wilson. I highly recommend this book for anyone interested in alternative energy.

  2. Obama is definitely taking a step in the right direction when it comes to energy efficiency. This is especially important in regards to new buildings and other architectural developments. My client, the American Institute of Architects (AIA), listed several recommendations for Obama’s economic recovery package, and through their Rebuild and Renew plan, 1.6 million jobs could be created for architects, designers, construction workers, etc. Learn more at the AIA’s blog, The Angle (http://blog.aia.org/angle/).

  3. The “green” energy industry is one of the best possible places to have new jobs created in our country. In contrast to the deaf and blind outlook of the Bush years, if we begin to open up real industrial bases in alternative fuels, solar power, and wind energy (among other technologies), we’ll not only be in a better position to recover from massive job cuts and loss of investment, as well as finally being able to put some sustainable energy systems into our list of resources.

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