Washington, D.C. – Four-star General Wesley Clark will lead Growth Energy as a co-chairman, the group announced today during the Good Jobs Green Jobs Conference in Washington, D.C. At the announcement, General Clark highlighted the immediate potential of ethanol to create new green-collar jobs now and promoted the promise of second-generation biofuels, such as cellulosic ethanol.
“Ethanol is America's best renewable fuel because it can help create green-collar jobs, boost our domestic economy, and improve our environment right now,” General Clark said. “By expanding our use of ethanol today, we can make immediate progress in three vital areas: greater energy independence, a stronger American economy and a cleaner environment. High-tech and homegrown ethanol has created hundreds of thousands of jobs over the past five years, and we can create even more. Nothing is more important in this time of economic turmoil than creating American jobs that reduce greenhouse gas emissions and help secure our energy independence. I am pleased to be leading Growth Energy as co-chairman.”
General Clark will lead Growth Energy as it works to increase American energy independence by expanding the use of environmentally-friendly ethanol and changing the regulatory cap that currently requires the use of 90 percent gasoline, much of which comes from foreign sources and unstable regions. In 2007, the ethanol industry created more than 200,000 new jobs, contributed $47.6 billion to the nation's GDP and generated $4.6 billion in federal tax revenues. The U.S. Department of Energy estimates that for every billion gallons of ethanol produced, 10,000 to 20,000 new jobs will be created.
“We're thrilled to have General Clark help lead our team at Growth Energy,” said Dave Vander Griend, board member of Growth Energy and CEO of ICM. “From first in his class at West Point to NATO Supreme Allied Commander, I couldn't think of a better leader for America's energy future. General Clark knows this clean, green fuel can propel us toward a brighter future by creating American jobs, reducing our greenhouse gas emissions and freeing ourselves from the shackles of petro dictators and foreign oil.”
General Wesley Clark rose to the rank of four-star general after nearly 40 years of service in the U.S. Army. As NATO Supreme Allied Commander he led NATO forces to victory in Operation Allied Force, saving 1.5 million Albanians from ethnic cleansing without the loss of a single American soldier. His awards and honors include the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the U.S. Department of Defense Distinguished Service Medal, the U.S. Army Distinguished Service Medal, the Silver Star, the Bronze Star and the Purple Heart. General Clark is one of the most highly decorated military leaders since General Dwight D. Eisenhower.
About Growth Energy
Growth Energy is a group committed to the promise of agriculture and growing America's economy through cleaner, greener energy. Growth Energy members recognize America needs a new ethanol approach. Through smart policy reform and a proactive grassroots campaign, Growth Energy promotes reducing greenhouse gas emissions, expanding the use of ethanol in gasoline, decreasing our dependence on foreign oil, and creating American jobs at home. More information can be found at GrowthEnergy.org.