It’s tough to make predictions, especially about the future. Yogi Berra said that. He also said, the future ain’t what it used to be. For Glen Hiemstra, the future holds the key to current planning. The founder of the website futurist.com, Hiemstra consults for businesses and governments on how to take the long view on trends. In his book, Turning the Future into Revenue, he argues that the planning horizon should stretch out for several decades in order to meet the sustainability challenges we face right now.
The Democratic party has shied away from linking clean energy, the economy, and the environment since Jimmy Carter’s 1977 Energy Policy. But the political winds are changing. At Tuesday evening’s Democratic National Convention, almost all of the speakers hit on the theme of green collar jobs. Nancy Floyd of Nth Power noted that there are 2.4 million green collar jobs worldwide — but less than 10 percent are in US. Presumptive Democrat candidate Barack Obama’s platform calls for more than doubling that number to 5 million green collar jobs in the US alone. And he’s framing it as a win-win-win to get us off foreign oil, stop global warming, and create tons of green jobs in the US. This week, we feature the second part of our conversation with Bracken Hendricks, co-author with Congressman Jay Inslee of Apollo’s Fire, and co-founder of the Apollo Alliance. The discussion focuses on the political will required to build a green economy.
Climate change, racial discrimination, and economic recession may seem impossible to solve. But building a green economy could do the trick. The beauty of the green economy is that it could tackle all these problems at the same time. But only if labor is a driving force behind it. And that’s beginning to happen. Green collar jobs build a clean energy infrastructure. They’re hard to outsource because most of the work, like weatherizing homes, happens on-site. Advocates are working to make the green workforce more racially inclusive. And incomes could rise as demand grows for workers left out of the oil-based economy. Today we speak with 2 of the most prominent advocates for green collar jobs and the green economy. Today, we speak with Bracken Hendricks, author of Apollo’s Fire: Igniting America’s Clean Energy Economy. and co-founder of the Apollo Alliance, a coalition of business, labor, environmental, and community leaders working to catalyze a green economy. We also hear from Van Jones, founder of Green For All, an initiative seeking to lift 250,000 people out of poverty through green-collar jobs.
CWR co-hosts Francesca Rheannon and Bill Baue speak with Daniel Lerch, author of Post Carbon Cities: Planning for Energy and Climate Uncertainty and manager of the Post Carbon Cities project of the Post Carbon Institute. Lerch discusses the overlap as well as the distinctions between peak oil and climate change. He also responds to the question of how the policy void at the federal government level in the US is driving action at the municipal and state level to address climate change and peak oil.
The show also features CWR’s new headlines segment:
–Nanotech is Exposed in Grocery Store Aisles;
–The Vatican says greenhouse gas emissions and genetically modified organisms are “Modern Sins”;
–A new study says the Clean Energy Market will Hit $254 Billion by 2017.
In part one of this two-part interview, Corporate Watchdog Radio co-hosts Francesca Rheannon and Bill Baue speak with Ron Pernick and Clint Wilder, co-authors of the new book, The Clean Tech Revolution: The Next Big Growth and Investment Opportunity. Pernick and Wilder, who helped define the clean tech industry in their work with the research and publishing firm Clean Edge, discuss how clean tech includes clean energy sources such as solar and wind but not so-called “clean” coal or nuclear, despite the fact that some environmentalists claim nukes can help solve climate change. Pernick and Wilder also explain the six Cs, or the major forces they identified that are driving the clean tech revolution.
This week’s conversation covers fours of the Cs (costs, capital, competition, and climate), saving the final two (China and consumers) for the second half of the interview next week.