Stimulus Money to Create Green Jobs

The federal government has committed a total of $3.2 billion dollars to a new Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant program, a part of President Obama's economic recovery plan. The Allegheny Front's Leah Kauffman reports that mean green jobs for the region.

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OPEN: The federal government has committed a total of $3.2 billion dollars to a new Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant program, a part of President Obama's economic recovery plan. The Allegheny Front's Leah Kauffman reports.

The new funding is to improve the energy efficiency of residential and commercial buildings across the country. The money can also be used for things like public transportation, installation of renewable energy sources on government buildings, and for more energy-efficient traffic and street lights.

Secretary of Energy Steven Chu, who announced the plan in Pittsburgh, said it means more jobs in the green sector. Bill Cagney of the Pittsburgh local chapter of the International Union of Operating Engineers says that's good news for both his current and future workers.

Cagney:
Our plan is to build a training center for our members that includes all the latest technology in building operations as well as the renewable energy products that are on the market and use it as a living training area. .. and then we will be housed along with the city school district's career technical education system and we will interface with the students...and show them that a green collar job is one that can pay a good wage, has a good pension and benefits, that you can get a college degree with us, you'll be helping the environment.

Most of the program's money will go directly to state and local governments. Pennsylvania will get a total of $102 million dollars. Ohio will get $84 million, and New York will receive $175 million.

For The Allegheny Front, this is Leah Kauffman.