President Obama summarized his plan for prosperity in the first sentence of his 3rd State of the Union Address on Tuesday:
Tonight, I want to speak about how we move forward, and lay out a blueprint for an economy that’s built to last – an economy built on American manufacturing, American energy, skills for American workers, and a renewal of American values.
Noting that the same research and innovation that created new industries and new jobs by developing the computer chip and the Internet, is now the promise of innovation in American-made clean energy. Pointing out that since he took office the United States has opened millions of acres for oil and gas exploration, and he would now be directing the opening of more than 75 percent of America’s potential offshore oil and gas resources.
American oil production, the President explained, is the highest it’s been in eight years, and that in 2011, we relied on less foreign oil than in any of the past 16 years, but what’s really needed now is a strategy that’s both cleaner and less costly, and one that holds the promise of new American jobs, but one which will not entail risk to “the lives and the health and safety of our citizens.”
We have a supply of natural gas that can last America nearly 100 years. And my administration will take every possible action to safely develop this energy. Experts believe this will support more than 600,000 jobs by the end of the decade. And I’m requiring all companies that drill for gas on public lands to disclose the chemicals they use.
Developing natural gas resources will allow for cleaner and cheaper power, he said, and will also create jobs, so that we won’t have to choose between prosperity and protecting our environment.
Now, what’s true for natural gas is just as true for clean energy. In three years, our partnership with the private sector has already positioned America to be the world’s leading manufacturer of high-tech batteries. Because of federal investments, renewable energy use has nearly doubled, and thousands of Americans have jobs because of it.
As a sign of his commitment, the President will direct the administration to allow the development of enough clean energy on public lands to power 3 million homes, and among America’s partnerships will be the world’s largest consumer of energy: the United States Department of Defense.
Finally, the President noted that the easies way to save money is to waste less energy, and to provide an immediate “carrot” for this, for big business, he proposes help manufacturers in this country to eliminate energy waste in factories by providing significant incentives to upgrade buildings and thereby lower their energy bills by $100 billion over the next decade. The United States will have more jobs as a result, he explains and the earth will have less pollution.
The video and the full transcript of the 2012 State of the Union Address are available on the White House Blog.