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Is Google Searching For Public Policy Answers?

Google wants to get the US economy running on clean energy. This week Google's nonprofit announced a plan to cut the use of fossil fuels in the US before 2030. For $4.4 trillion "Clean Energy 2030" would help end the use of coal and oil to generate electricity. The plan would allow for the use of natural gas and nuclear power, and also calls for cutting oil use in cars by 40 percent. By 2030, however, the net savings would top $1 trillion.

Google's climate and energy technology manager explained the company's motivation:

We can build whole new industries and create millions of new jobs. We can cut energy costs, both at the gas pump and at home. We can improve our national security. And we can put a big dent in climate change. With strong leadership we could be moving forward on an aggressive but realistic timeline and an approach that offsets costs with real economic gains.

Google asserts that the US will have to invest in renewable energy research, upgrade the electricity grid, impose better mileage standards, and build infrastructure such as charging stations for electric vehicles. Should Americans turn to the private sector for leadership on a public issue?

Join The Conversation
stephley stephley 8 years
It should be joint private-public, otherwise as CG suggests, we could end up being owned.
ilanac13 ilanac13 8 years
well i think that we have to think about what private sector companies can do and what they can bring to the table. we're starting to rely on the federal government for eveything now that the bailouts are going on and i think that it's only a matter of time until we really look to the private companies to come up with new and innovative things. it's the people like buffett that are able to infuse so much capital in to a company to keep it going - so what's to say that it's not smart to have those same firms be on the forefront of industry.
dreamsugar dreamsugar 8 years
It can't be that Google just wants to make a contribution to the world -- no that would be too much like taking over the world :oy:. :cheer: Go Google!!!! Anything to help get us off of fossil fuel is a-ok with me!
Jude-C Jude-C 8 years
"Should Americans turn to the private sector for leadership on a public issue?" Well, since so many in the public sector seem fixated on continuing our dependence on fossil fuel, it's good that there are some in the private sector with the means to make a difference in a different way. Good point though about the world domination, CG.
CaterpillarGirl CaterpillarGirl 8 years
...and we in no way want to take over the world....
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