Obama promotes home energy efficiency program

Print
Email
|

by Associated Press

wfaa.com

Posted on December 15, 2009 at 11:32 AM

Updated Friday, Jan 29 at 5:56 PM

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama visited a Home Depot store Tuesday morning as he presses Congress to pass incentives for homeowners who make their homes more energy efficient.

Obama was joined at the Northern Virginia outlet by members of Congress representing Virginia and labor and business leaders involved in services to make lower use of natural resources consumed by homeowners.

The push was also seen by the administration as part of it's jobs creation effort. The visit marks the fourth time in less than two weeks that the president has presided over a high-profile event to call attention to his efforts to bring down the nation's double-digit unemployment rate.

Last week, the president proposed a new spending plan that would provide tax breaks for energy-efficient retrofits in homes. The plan also calls for small business tax cuts and new spending on highway and bridge construction. The administration hasn't put a price tag on the plan, but it could cost more than $150 billion.

The White House hopes the appeal of the retrofitting program — which some administration officials have dubbed Cash for Caulkers — will be similar to the now-expired Cash for Clunkers program, which offered rebates for trading in used vehicles for more fuel-efficient ones. At a White House jobs summit earlier in the month, Obama told Home Depot chairman Frank Blake that home improvement companies would be key partners in this program.

Obama has also proposed expanding stimulus initiatives that promote energy efficiency and clean energy jobs. Currently, about $8 billion of the $787 billion stimulus package goes toward energy-saving investments in homes. The White House has said investments like installing insulation, sealing leaks and modernizing heating and air conditioning equipment will pay for themselves many times over.

In a memo for the president, Vice President Joe Biden said stimulus spending and other initiatives will lead to 1 million home energy-efficiency retrofits by 2012. The report also said the U.S. is on track to double renewable energy generation, including solar, wind and geothermal, in three years.

Print
Email
|