Last week a 50-page infrastructure priorities list, reportedly compiled by a consultancy on behalf of Donald Trump's transition team before the inauguration, surfaced on the Web. And some were surprised by the plentiful references to clean energy.
First released by McClatchy and the Kansas City Star, the list includes 50 infrastructure projects totaling $137.5 billion, of which half is expected from private investment. The plan places an emphasis on transportation systems, calling for renovations and construction of highways, bridges and rail systems.
But the wish-list also seems to prioritize green energy, spelling out plans to invest in wind and solar.
The Keystone XL and Dakota Access pipelines, along with the Trump’s infamous border wall, did not make appearances on the list of initiatives.
The construction and engineering for these projects would “keep the equivalent of 24,000 people employed for 10 years,” according to an analysis from Christopher Helman of Forbes.
The 9 GW of renewable power created from the short-list of projects is equivalent to five coal-fired power plants, enough to power around 5 million homes.
Senate Democrats were quick to respond to Trump’s infrastructure plan, releasing an infrastructure plan of their own. Only they scoffed at the low dollar count invested in Trump’s plan and one-upped the commander in chief to the tune of $1 trillion. The money would be spent over the next 10 years on highways, airports, schools and renewable energy.
Here’s a better breakdown of the plan (from Vox):
Keep in mind the Trump administration has yet to release an official infrastructure package. Will the final plan include these clean-energy projects, and could the administration even take a few cues from the Democrats' proposal?
Only time will tell. But out of all of the administration's proposed initiatives, infrastructure may hold the most potential for bipartisan collaboration.
Image credit: Flickr/Michael Vadon
Based in Washington, DC, Grant works as a program assistant at SEEP Network, an international development nonprofit. A proud graduate of the University of Maryland, Grant spent four months post-grad living in Armenia where he worked for Habitat for Humanity and the World Food Programme. Grant is passionate about humanitarianism and finding sustainable approaches to international development. He enjoys playing trivia with friends but is still seeking his first victory - he ceaselessly blames his friends lack of preparation.