Al Gore's Clean-Energy Group Hosting Talk on "Benefits" of Proposed Law

A group headed by Al Gore is hosting a library roundtable this Wednesday to talk about the hoped-for benefits of the Waxman-Markey bill, a plan to kickstart clean-energy industries now wending its way through Congress. (No, Gore won't be there).

According to Repower America, a "project" of the Gore-led Alliance for Climate Protection, the panel will focus on how the bill would:



· Jumpstart our economy and create millions of jobs;

· Help end our dependence on foreign oil;

· Reduce the threat of harmful pollution;

· Reward innovation and job creation; and

· Help solve the climate crisis.

Sounds great, right? As long as you don't mind losing millions of jobs and billions of dollars at the same time, according to critics.

The panel will include Shawn Hutchinson, president of the IBEW Local Union 640 (will you need a union card to get these great clean energy jobs?); Rob Smith, regional director of the Sierra Club (to discuss how beautiful the desert looks when covered in solar panels and windmills?); Ed Ableser, state representative from Tempe (who?); and Tom Alston, of American Solar Electric (a possible direct beneficiary of the new, clean-energy economy).

The roundtable is scheduled for noon Wednesday in the Burton Barr Library in Phoenix, 1221 N Central Avenue.

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Ray Stern has worked as a newspaper reporter in Arizona for more than two decades. He's won numerous awards for his reporting, including the Arizona Press Club's Don Bolles Award for Investigative Journalism.