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A Green Global Recovery? Assessing U.S. Economic Stimulus and Prospects for International Coordination

Well-tailored “green” components of a recovery effort can create jobs and stimulate the economy while achieving significant energy cost savings for businesses, consumers and the government.

Key Findings

Executive Summary

As the 111th Congress begins and a new president takes office, the economic crisis dominates the US policy agenda. The financial system remains in a tenuous state despite massive bank recapitalization, and the economy, more than a year into the current recession, shows no signs of recovery. Given the scale of the challenge Washington faces and the amount of money required to combat it, there will likely be little room for other legislative priorities. As a result, policymakers are hoping to direct government spending over the next two years in a way that not only generates short-term economic growth and employment but also addresses long-term policy goals sidelined by the current crisis.

Energy and environmental objectives are chief among these goals, as evidenced by the considerable attention given to the notion of a green economic recovery by policymakers and the press. This Policy Brief provides a framework for evaluating ways to meet energy and climate-policy goals as part of an economic recovery effort, assesses a range of policy options currently under consideration, and discusses the prospects for coordinating US actions with those of other major economies for broader effect.

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