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Van Jones on the Green Recovery - Building Priorities Briefing

In this month's briefing: Denis Du Bois grabs his ever-ready shovel -- and microphone -- and digs into the subject of the green recovery. Interview with Van Jones, the founder and president of Green for All, recipient of several awards for leadership in human rights, and author of the book "The Green Collar Economy." (podcast)


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Theme music by Alexander Blu
Energy Minute music by Chris Keister

Program notes

Green jobs are all the buzz right now. They're seen by some as the way out of the recession.

What's the connection between a green recovery and intelligent buildings? While no one's breaking ground on new commercial facilities right now, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act could create sizeable incentives for energy efficiency retrofits and on-site renewable energy. Carbon legislation would magnify the motivation to use less fossil-fuel energy.

Whether it's fine-tuning chiller plants in the basement, or installing rooftop arrays, someone has to get their hands dirty. And therein lies a green collar job.

For the details the Briefing interviewed Van Jones, who we heard as a Master Speaker at the most recent Greenbuild conference. Mr. Jones is the founder and president of Green for All, a non-profit that promotes green-collar jobs and opportunities for the disadvantaged. He's also behind a national coalition that's promoting a "Clean Energy Corps". He's the recipient of several awards for leadership in human rights, and author of the book "The Green Collar Economy."

(Van Jones interview)


Van Jones mentioned this study in his interview:


"This report provides for the first time a comprehensive examination of the economic impacts of climate change and adaptation in California. Climate response, on the other hand, can be executed for a fraction of these net costs by strategic deployment of existing resources for infrastructure renewal/replacement and significant private investments that would enhance both employment and productivity."

"Early push positioned states for green jobs now" (AP)


The competition to lure green industry jobs heated up several years ago, and is expected to grow even tighter with more money in play.

GreenBiz interviewed Van Jones when he was promoting his new book. A transcript is included.


Van Jones was hired as Special Advisor for Green Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation for President Obama's White House Council on Environmental Quality, working for CEQ Chair Nancy Sutley.


Van Jones resigns White House post after G.O.P. and Fox criticism


"A relatively minor figure in the administration, Van Jones had threatened to become a significant distraction." - NYT