$10 Billion for a Worthwhile Bank

greenbank2009There are two things that raise my skepticism meter: #1 Politicians. #2 The word Green.

I believe politicians’ motives should always be questioned. It’s a good idea to suspect the first 100 or so things they say,  before they get to the real deal.

And Green has been splashed over everything to sell stuff, even a Bamboo Baby Hat (real) and a Grass Cell Phone (conceptual).

So why, in the midst of AIG bonuses and stuffing taxpayer money into banks,  should the idea of the US government funding another bank with $10 billion sound worthwhile?

Here’s why: A Green Bank to Fund Clean Energy!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009, Congressman Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), Assistant to the Speaker, introduced the Green Bank Act of 2009.  The legislation creates the Green Bank as an independent, tax-exempt, wholly owned corporation of the United States.  The Bank’s exclusive mission will be to provide a comprehensive range of financing support to qualified clean energy and energy efficiency projects within the territorial United States…

The Green Bank Act of 2009 would do the following:

  • Create the Green Bank as an independent, tax-exempt, wholly owned corporation of the United States with the exclusive mission of providing a comprehensive range of financing support to qualified clean energy and energy efficiency projects within the territorial United States.
  • Provide the Green Bank with an initial capitalization of $10 billion through the issuance of Green Bonds by the Department of Treasury, with a maximum authorized limit of $50 billion in Green Bonds outstanding at any one time.
  • Assist in advancing vital national objectives — including transitioning to a clean energy economy, job creation through the construction and operation of clean energy and energy efficiency projects, abating climate change, energy independence from foreign sources, and fostering long-term domestic manufacturing capacity in clean energy and energy efficiency technologies.
  • Include robust spending safeguards and public disclosure requirements to ensure that the Green Bank operates at the highest levels of efficacy, accountability and transparency.

Now I don’t know how you feel about more taxpayer money being spent, but I can buy into this one.

Why? Because:

  • It respects entrepreneurship by providing those who qualify with the capital to get things done
  • It honors the competitive marketplace by not saying who’s to be successful and who’s not
  • And it puts taxpayer money to work:
    • Creating green jobs that will help the US economy
    • Creating clean energy production & energy efficient products/projects
    • Helping slow climate change
    • Reducing dependence on foreign energy sources

What’s not to like?

~~~~~~

Chris Arlen
President, Service Performance

Technorati: Green Bank Act of 2009, clean energy, green jobs

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