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GRANHOLM FOCUSES ON GREEN JOBS

"GRANHOLM FOCUSES ON GREEN JOBSBy DAVID EGGERT | Associated Press WriterLANSING, Mich. - Gov. Jennifer Granholm is pushing hard this week to plug
Michigan's flagging economy into alternative energy.The Democratic governor was in Washington, D.C., Tuesday for a climate
change symposium led by former British Prime Minister Tony Blair. Experts
at the event focused on adding jobs through U.S. climate change policies.A wind energy conference was held in Detroit Tuesday and will continue
Wednesday.And Thursday, Granholm will speak at a conference at the University of
Michigan about low-carbon manufacturing in the Midwest. Senior executives
from Ford, Whirlpool and advanced battery companies also plan to speak at
the event held in partnership with the Royal Danish Embassy and The Climate
Group.Granholm praised Denmarkfor focusing on the renewable energy industry to
lower its unemployment rate. She plans to sign an agreement with Denmark's
climate and energy minister to work together to create a ""low-carbon
economy.""""The point of this is really to focus on how we can really put the pedal to
the metal, especially with the stimulus and the fact there is an incoming
energy bill which will create policy that will generate jobs,"" she told The
Associated Press in a phone interview.Also Tuesday, state lawmakers announced bipartisan legislation to offer
another $200 million in tax breaks to encourage the development of advanced
battery technology in Michigan. Granholm signed a law in January offering
$335 million in refundable tax credits for developing, manufacturing and
assembling the batteries at the heart of next-generation electric vehicles.The governor said the biggest barrier to growing the renewable energy
industry is banks that refuse to lend money.""A lot of windturbine manufacturers have put their plans on hold,"" Granholm
said.But she expects the financial industry to rebound and said she is excited
that both the state and federal governments are investing more in renewable
energy and the ""green"" economy. She cited the federal stimulus, especially
the chance to compete with other states for $2 billion in grants for
advanced batteries for electric vehicles.""We intend to take advantage of every bit of it,"" Granholm said.Asked about the extra costs of electricity generated by wind and solaras
opposed to traditional fossil fuels, Granholm said they will be offset by
weatherization and energy-efficiency programs. She also encouraged
utilities to pursue technology to bury carbon dioxide from power plants
deep beneath the ground.Critics complain that businesses and residents could lose out if they have
higher energy costs, while others say good-paying jobs are available at
wind turbine companies and the like.Consumers Energy, the state's second-biggest utility, said Tuesday it was
inviting companies to submit bids to participate in new energy-efficiency
programs expected to start up later this year.The Jackson-based utility said hundreds of jobs will be added in energy
auditing, equipment installation and other areas.Original article hereFor the very latest green energy jobs please search Renewable Energy Jobs"