Full Title: Jumpstarting U.S. Clean Energy Manufacturing in Economic Stimulus and Infrastructure Legislation
Author(s): Paul Bledsoe
Publisher(s): Progressive Policy Institute
Publication Date: May 14, 2020
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In his 2016 campaign, candidate Donald Trump famously promised to revitalize American manufacturing and to pass major legislation to rebuild crumbling U.S. infrastructure. So far, in more than three years as President, he has done neither.
But in the face of the unprecedented COVID crisis, economic downturn and the worst unemployment since the Great Depression, many Democrats and some Republicans have begun to urge enactment of ambitious economic stimulus and recovery legislation, including a major infrastructure bill with a job-creating focus.
Properly structured stimulus and infrastructure legislation could help jumpstart U.S. manufacturing, which was already slumping badly under Trump throughout 2019, long before the COVID-crisis. In particular, the U.S. has an opportunity to create high-paying jobs and production in the fast-growing clean energy manufacturing sector, an industry that has been dominated by our global competitors, especially China, for the last decade.
Clean energy manufacturing represents perhaps the biggest single new growth opening for American industry in the coming years, as the transition to zero-carbon global and domestic economies creates unprecedented demand for dozens of clean energy technologies to address climate change. The U.S. is especially well-positioned to capture these markets as our national and corporate laboratories have created far more clean energy innovation breakthroughs than any other nation.