Big Dollars for Renewable Energy

More than 20 burned and charred oil tanker train cars lie next to and on top of each other with emergency vehicles nearby

Firefighters near the remains of a freight train explosion in Lac Mégantic, Canada in 2013. The driverless, runaway fuel train exploded, killing dozens of residents.


Mathieu Belanger/Reuters

The Clinton Global Initiative is wrapping up here in NYC. This week's meetings saw the announcement of $4 billion in investments in biofuels and other energy technologies to cut global warming pollution. Yesterday, Sir Richard Branson said that he would invest $3 billion. (Branson Pledges Billions to Fight Global Warming, by Andrew C. Revkin, NY Times, 9/21/06), and today President Clinton announced a $1 billion renewable energy investment fund (Clinton debuts $1B renewable-energy fund, by Nahal Toosi, Associated Press, 9/22/06). You know the old saying: a billion here and a billion there and soon you start talking about real money. Nothing can substitute for good government policies, but these are big sums and if they're used well, they will make a difference.

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