“Today more than 300 organizations from homebuilders to affordable housing owners to companies like Home Depot and Apple announced that they are going to expand the use of solar energy, thereby creating more jobs and cutting carbon pollution,” President Barack Obama said.
“In many ways, the solar commitment made today by more than 300 leading U.S. businesses, including Walmart, Apple and IKEA, is like getting a triple-A investment rating from Moody’s or Standard and Poor’s,” said Solar Energy Industries Association CEO Rhone Resch, of the announcements. “Solar has become a ‘street-smart’ investment.…Having worked closely with both the Administration and the private sector to increase the use of clean, reliable solar nationwide, SEIA applauds this exciting, new initiative, and we look forward to assisting commercial businesses, homebuilders, rural co-ops, governmental entities and America’s financial community in bringing more than 850 megawatts (MW) of new solar online.”
“We’re becoming a global leader in solar. Thanks in part to the investments we made in the recovery act,” Obama said. “Over the past few years the cost of solar panels have fallen by 60 percent. Solar installations have increased by 500 percent. Every 4 minutes another American home or business goes solar. And every panel is pounded into place by another worker whose job cannot be shipped overseas. So toady no matter where you live or where you do business, solar is getting cheaper and it’s getting easier to use than before.”
“With more businesses and rural cooperatives and homes choosing solar, prices keep coming down,” Obama said. “Manufacturers keep getting more innovative and more jobs are created. Last year jobs in the solar industry increased by 20 percent.”
“We’ve got more to do and I want to work with Congress to do it,” Obama said. “Unfortunately has not always been as visionary on these issues as we’d like. It can be a little frustrating.” However, he added that he and his administration will take steps to encourage more clean energy and jobs.
In addition to the better buildings initiative and supporting more solar on businesses, Obama said he would double down on making federal buildings more energy efficient. “Two years ago I ordered $2 billion in upgrades to federal buildings. Today I’m ordering an additional $2 billion in upgrades over the next three years. These upgrades will create tens of thousands of construction jobs and save taxpayers billions of dollars,” he said.Tweet