Thursday, December 18, 2008

Green Is the New Color of Lobbying

Now these are living wage greencollar jobs!
From the Wall Street Journal:
WASHINGTON -- Lobbying for green energy has become a red hot business here.

From electric cars to "green" roofs, companies that produce renewable fuels and energy-efficient products have snapped up Washington lobbyists at a rapid clip to get a helping hand from the federal government.

Nearly 300 green companies and industry groups have signed up Washington lobbying firms seeking tax breaks, research grants, contracts and other government business during the current two-year session of Congress, according to disclosure forms reviewed by The Wall Street Journal. That is an eightfold increase from the previous session.

The growth in the green-lobbying business is the offshoot of converging economic and political trends: Rising energy prices and concerns about global warming have created a need to find alternative energy sources. Meanwhile, the 2006 and 2008 elections have empowered Democrats who are more inclined to use the government to boost energy efficiency and renewable fuels. That has put billions of dollars up for grabs....

...Lobbyists for scores of green companies see the stimulus plan as a ripe opportunity. The American Wind Energy Association and the Solar Energy Industries Association want to require as much as 20% of the nation's electricity to come from renewable sources. The Integrated Waste Services Association wants the government to require more fuel to come from municipal solid waste. Companies that seek to harness ocean waves to make energy want some help from the government.

[Going Green]

A coalition of renewable-fuel companies wants to upgrade the electricity grid so they can expand the marketplace for their renewable electricity. The National Association of Homebuilders wants bigger tax credits for constructing energy-efficient homes.

The growing business for green lobbying has spurred some lobbyists to shift their focus. Sam Geduldig, a financial-services lobbyist, signed up the green-roofing association a few months ago and is close to making a deal with two other clients. Mr. Geduldig says "there are no bad meetings" when he brings renewable clients to Capitol Hill. "You go into a Republican office and they love the innovation and idea of putting energy back into the grid," he says between pitches. "Democrats love the green technology angle and encouraging conservation.">>>MORE