CONGRESSMAN MISUNDERESTIMATES NEW ENERGY
Wind industry: Rep. Stearns 'misunderstands' us
Andrew Restuccia, October 7, 2011 (The Hill)
"The wind power industry slammed Rep. Cliff Stearns (R-Fla.)…for saying that the United States can’t compete with China when it comes to renewable energy manufacturing…American Wind Energy Associate President Denise Bode said…Stearns, the lawmaker heading up a Republican investigation of the administration’s $535 million loan guarantee to failed solar company Solyndra, ‘misunderstands’ the wind industry…
"Bode pointed to a September Congressional Research Service report that said there were nearly 400 U.S. manufacturing facilities producing components for wind energy project in 2010. There were about 30 reported in 2004…Wind turbine manufacturing employed about 20,000 people in the United States in 2010, the report said…[and] manufacturing clusters have developed in… Colorado, Iowa, and Texas, which offer proximity to the best locations for wind…"
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"Stearns, in a recent interview, said the United States ‘can’t compete with China to make solar panels and wind turbines.’ …The White House pounced on Stearns's remarks, calling them an example of ‘counterproductive defeatism.’ President Obama…[rejected] the idea that the United States can’t compete with China in such areas, though he didn’t name Stearns specifically…[Stearns claims his remarks were] taken out of context…
"American solar manufacturing does face a number of challenges, including competition from China, which has invested billions in the industry…The Obama administration has called on policymakers to support continued investment in solar energy to compete with China and other countries…But Republicans have pummeled the White House over the Solyndra bankruptcy, alleging the administration didn’t properly vet the company and raising questions about the Obama’s ‘green jobs’ agenda…"