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Green Manufacturing Retooling Projects 2.5 Million New Jobs

make-it-in-america2A multi-state advertising and advocacy campaign calling for federal investments in “green” manufacturing is about to kick off.

If the nation can transition to 25 percent of U.S. electricity generation to renewables, it would result in 2.5 million jobs in related industries, the campaign states.

The Apollo Alliance, a national coalition of business, labor, environmental and community leader, just released its Green Manufacturing Action Plan.

According to a press release, the plan calls for:

  • Direct federal funding for clean energy manufacturers to retool facilities and retrain workers to develop, produce and commercialize clean energy technologies.
  • Tying federal support to manufacturers’ ability to meet labor and “Made in America” content standards.
  • Federal support to streamline the clean energy components supply chain to make American producers more competitive.
  • Increased federal Green Jobs Act funding to enable the American workforce to meet the demands of a clean energy economy.
  • Creation of a Presidential Task Force on Clean Energy Manufacturing to coordinate the federal government’s efforts and increase our international competitiveness.

The alliance says that the U.S. market for solar panels, wind turbines, fuel cells, biomass engines and combined heat/power systems will reach $226 billion by 2016.

It projects that up to 80 percent of related jobs will be in the manufacturing sector, and the alliance wants those jobs to stay in the United States.

While creating products that are good for the environment may be good for the nation’s economy, the actual manufacture of such items may not be so “green” in the end.

A recent study of the energy use in 20 major manufacturing processes, conducted by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), reveals that modern manufacturing methods are inefficient in their use of energy and materials.

Still, companies like Boeing, Coca-Cola and General Mills say cleaner, safer and more energy-efficient manufacturing practices are a necessity during economic downturns, according to a new white paper released by Rockwell Automation.

“Perspectives on Sustainable Production: Delivering Economic Value and Serving Greater Good” (PDF), features viewpoints from sustainability executives at Rockwell Automation and its customers.

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