And, as for what, Senator Obama has moved into a zone that is fostering optimist in this pessimistic optimist (or optimistic pessmist, can’t remember which). Who is the last Presidential candidate who, on the eve of the election in what might be most important core presentation to the nation, focused on energy efficiency? … To be clear, that is a rhetorical question.
When people speak toward energy, the conversation is rarely holistic and far too many focus simplistically and solely on power sources. They will point to the false panacea of new oil, truthiness of drilling as some form of solution. They will falsely claim that 45 nuclear power plants will, somehow, solve global warming. Or, perhaps from a differing perspective, they will say “solar power” or “wind mills” or trash to power. This is missing the boat. We need holistic thinking about energy. And, we’re getting that from Barack Obama.
What did Barack say that merits fostering excitement in the energy arena?
All across America I’ve seen entrepreneurs and innovators who point the way to a better future, starting with energy independence. Recently, I visited the McKinstry Company, in Seattle. They’re retrofitting schools and office buildings to make them energy efficient, creating jobs, saving their customers money, reducing carbon emissions, and helping to end our dependence on Middle Eastern oil. As president, I’ll use companies like McKinstry as a model for the nation. I’ll invest $15 billion a year in energy efficiency and renewable sources of energy, like wind, solar, and biofuels, creating five million clean energy jobs over the next decade — jobs that pay well and can never be outsourced.
McKinstry Company … which is “retrofitting schools and office buildings to make them energy efficiency”. Obama didn’t focus on some leading edge biofuel company, ocean power, concentrated solar power (CSP), Google.ORG’s investments, or any of the truly Energy COOL developments going on. No, he highlighted a firm working in the fastest payback, most cost-effective first step to start us (all of US) on the path toward rapid movement toward a prosperous, climate-friendly society: energy efficiency.
Obama has made a new energy future core to his stump speech. He has made “Green Jobs” central to his vision of prosperity. And, when it came down to it, in something that he and the campaign invested themselves in, he chose to focus on energy efficiency. … This is the type of focus that suggests the promise is real.
Hat-tip to David Roberts at Grist. And, from there, this wonderful footnote: “McKinstry, a company that’s been around since 1960 but has reinvented itself for the 21st century. They just got publicity you literally can’t buy. Not that they need any help recruiting — they were rated No. 1 best place to work by Washington CEO last year”. Hmmm … green jobs go along with good places to work?