Negotiations Intensify this Week on New COVID-19 Package

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Creative Commons Licence

Contributors

Contributed date

July 20, 2020 - 9:58am

Critical Commentary

This article details the negotiations over possible stimulus package to offset the impact of COVID-19 on the US economy. The package is explicitly targeting the hard-hit energy sector. The Alliance to Save Energy noted that energy efficiency sector of the energy industry (a sector highlighted in IEA’s sustainable recovery plan) had lost more jobs than any other sector: “the 360,000 energy efficiency job losses are nearly twice the entire coal industry workforce, roughly equivalent to the combined wind and solar workforces, and more than three times the number of oil and gas industry job losses as a result of COVID.” Environmental groups aligned under the Coalition for Clean Energy and Healthy Communities further urged for a COVID recovery plan that refrains from bailing out fossil fuels and instead focuses on clean energy and cleaning the environment. Conservative energy groups like the Citizens for Responsible Energy Solutions (CRES) and the Conservative Energy Network also endorsed using the COVID recovery package to support clean energy, but reject the so called “massive government-managed programs supported by extreme environmental organizations."
The Paycheck Protection Program that has benefitted mining, oil, and gas extractors (receiving about $4.5 billion) and utilities ($1.5 billion) for keeping their staff on their payroll has also been critiqued and may be subject to revision “after reports have surfaced of aid being doled out to large and well-capitalized companies.”

Source

Cahlink, George. 2020. “Negotiations Intensify This Week on New COVID-19 Package.” E&E News, July 20, 2020. https://www.eenews.net/stories/1063594603.

Group Audience

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