Renewable Energy Investment Offers Boon for Ohio Economy, Report Says

Gongwer News Service - October 24, 2005

Gongwer News Service

A major national investment in renewable energy technologies would bring about significant growth in the state’s manufacturing industry and overall business climate, according to a new report released by Policy Matters Ohio.

The report, which reviews what would be needed to generate electricity for about 53 million homes, says Ohio would rank fourth nationally in manufacturing jobs and fifth in overall investment.

“With the right policy reforms, Ohio stands to benefit disproportionately from this investment,” said George Stetzinger,
executive director, executive director of the Renewable Energy Policy Project, which produced a report on which Policy Matters based its conclusions.

The report indicates that Ohio is home to more than 2,000 of the 36,000 American companies that produce parts similar to those that are needed to generate electricity from renewable fuels. It indicated that slight retooling could help these manufacturers take advantage of the opportunity.

The changes, the report said, would likely help produce 22,000 new Ohio jobs that could be located in 85 of the state’s 88 counties. The report said Ohio’s larger counties stand to benefit the most, but noted that rural areas could also see job growth.

Amy Hanauer, report author and PMO executive director, said the policy shift could bring significant benefits. “Most people know that increased use of renewable energy would reduce dependence on foreign fuel and improve the environment,” she said. “It could also keep money in the domestic economy and produce jobs in Ohio.”

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