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Obama ramps up push for energy-efficiency program

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Obama urges green job growth
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • "The jobs of tomorrow will be jobs in the clean energy sector," Obama says
  • Obama highlights proposed Home Star program, which was first outlined in State of the Union address
  • Program provides rebates up to $3,000 for making energy-efficient changes to homes
  • White House predicts that between 2 million and 3 million homeowners will participate
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(CNN) -- President Obama ratcheted up his administration's push for a clean energy agenda Friday, emphasizing the prospects for an economic recovery fueled by so-called green jobs.

"The jobs of tomorrow will be jobs in the clean energy sector," Obama said during a visit to a small business in Arlington, Virginia.

"That's why my administration's taking steps to support a thriving clean energy industry across this country."

Obama highlighted his proposed Home Star program, which was first outlined in the State of the Union address. The program would provide rebates to homeowners of up to $3,000 for making energy-efficient improvements to their houses. Customers would be eligible for direct rebates at the point of sale, according to the White House.

Among other things, the program would provide 50 percent rebates of up to $1,500 for simpler upgrades such the installation of better insulation, duct sealing, water heaters, windows, doors and roofing.

The $3,000 upgrade would be reserved for more comprehensive retrofits that include a whole home energy audit and retrofit designed to achieve 20 percent energy savings.

The White House has predicted that between 2 million and 3 million homeowners will participate in the program. Obama said this week the program also will help cut the construction industry's 25 percent unemployment rate.

 
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