With a Solyndra-scandal-be-damned attitude, President Obama is expected to revive his push for new green fuel sources in Tuesday's State of the Union address, claiming that they will boost jobs and help clean the environment.
Industry sources who met with policy officials at the White House last week say the president will hint at an emerging administration plan to propose increased spending on green fuel sources and radical changes in how the government and Americans power machines in the future. [See a collection of political cartoons on energy policy.]
"He wants a huge, sweeping thing. He wants to do it all," said an industry source, who explained that the president's plan was sidelined by the Solyndra financing scandal. "They are trying to get the train back on track and it will probably start with the State of the Union," said the source.
The focus on the State of the Union came late last year with the president's Office of Science and Technology Policy calling for white papers from green fuel firms. What Obama wants, according to the request, is for new ways to produce energy in "lean budget times," regulatory reforms that would speed up new development of green fuel plants and ideas to add environmentally-friendly jobs to the economy.
Since then, the administration has rapidly ramped up its focus on green energy, announcing a plan for the Pentagon to start buying biofuel for jets and ships and several Agriculture Department initiatives to fund renewable energy projects.[Follow the U.S. News Energy Intelligence blog on Twitter]
"Look at the timing of all of this," said the industry source. "There are no coincidences when it comes to tying all of these green announcements and the president's speech together."