On 40th Anniversary of Earth Day, Workers, Environmental, Faith Leaders and Local Officials Gather to Celebrate Ohio’s Clean Energy Economy

On the 40th Anniversary of Earth Day, labor, environmental and community leaders gathered to showcase the fuel-efficient Chevy Cruze, mobile solar panels and other clean energy products made in Ohio.

April 20, 2010

Workers, Environmental, Faith Leaders and Local Officials Gather to Celebrate Ohio’s Clean Energy Economy on 40th Anniversary of Earth Day

Earth Day Event Highlights Need for Smart Policies to Drive Clean Energy Economy

Columbus, OH (April 22, 2010) At an event to celebrate the 4oth Anniversary of Earth Day and highlight the benefits of the clean energy economy, sportsmen, elected officials, members of the labor, faith and environmental communities and others gathered to showcase the fuel-efficient Chevy Cruze, mobile solar panels and other clean energy products made in Ohio.

Ohio State Senate Minority Leader Capri Cafaro welcomed the crowd on the west lawn of the Ohio Statehouse, and other speakers included Dave Green, President, UAW Local 1714 in Lordstown, Ohio, Rev. Danny Franz of Columbus Vineyard, Jason Orcena of the Ohio Public Health Association, and Matt Misicka of Ohio State University.

“Earth Day can and should serve as a reminder of the benefits that clean energy and green technologies will mean to Ohio both environmentally and economically,” said Senator Cafaro.  “Green jobs aren’t just better for our environment, they’re the economic engine that will drive our future economy. Getting people back to work is job one for us, and clean energy can create thousands of jobs here in Ohio.”

The Cruze featured at the event was assembled in Lordstown. Many of the components, including the wheels, engine block, transmission, and many stamped metal parts for the Cruze are made throughout Ohio. While the vehicle is not yet for sale, full-scale production is expected to begin this summer and it should be available for sale in the fall.

“Clean energy and greener, more fuel efficient vehicles are important to revitalizing manufacturing and replacing some of the jobs we’ve lost overseas over the past few decades,” said Dave Green, President, UAW Local 1714.  “The Cruze is a great example of this, but we need to do even more to ensure that we create good, green jobs here in Ohio both now and in the future.”

Lee Geisse, a steelworker from Canton who works as a greaser in a steel plant that makes titanium used in wind turbines, was one of the workers that attended the event and she said she believes clean energy will create good jobs for Ohio.

“Clean energy will create good jobs, while reducing carbon emissions and increasing our national security,” said Geisse.  “We can create whole new industries, businesses, and millions of American jobs by making the United States a global leader in the development and production of clean energy technologies.  We can’t afford to wait; we need to start implementing policies now that will spur growth and innovation.”

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