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Note: This page is part of the Governor's News Archive, which holds press releases from January 2009 through September 2011. Since October 2011, recent news can be found in the Newsroom and archived news is available at

February 16, 2009

Delaware Becomes National Leader in Climate Prosperity Strategies

Markell is first governor to propose statewide jobs strategy focused on climate protection

WILMINGTON -- Gov. Jack Markell announced Monday that Delaware will be the only state participating in a national project that places sustainability and environmental health and welfare squarely at the center of economic development efforts.

Delaware is the only state invited to join the Climate Prosperity Project, sponsored by the Rockefeller Brothers Fund and Global Urban Development. The project seeks to demonstrate that innovation, efficiency and conservation of resources are the best ways to create jobs and increase incomes, productivity and competitiveness. Project participants will develop best practices and provide expert advice for pilots that are pursuing environmentally sustainable economic development strategies.

Markell last year released a Climate Prosperity strategy that aims to make Delaware a leader in sustainable economic development. The state will implement strategies that reduce energy costs for businesses, making them more competitive, and for homeowners, returning dollars to the local economy.  It will also implement strategies to help Delaware’s existing businesses become participants in the green economy, and it will create a workforce trained to power green industries in Delaware, such as electric-vehicle manufacturing and the constructing of parts for wind turbines.

"Green is both a symbol for money and a symbol for the environment," Markell said. "I want to help Delaware businesses see their potential opportunities in the global green economy, because it will help get our economy moving again and it is good for our air, soil and water. Adopting a climate prosperity strategy in Delaware will not only grow our economy and create good-paying jobs, but it will also help Delawareans save money on their energy bills and help our environment by reducing pollution. Everyone wins when we create jobs and help the environment."  

The Climate Prosperity Project, which Delaware was just invited to join, seeks to address two significant challenges facing Delaware and the nation -- putting people back to work and fighting climate change. Delaware is experiencing record levels of unemployment and, at the American Association for the Advancement of Science conference this weekend, experts announced that global warming is likely occurring much more rapidly than previously believed.  

"Global Urban Development and the Rockefeller Brothers Fund are extremely pleased that Governor Jack Markell has committed the State of Delaware to become one of the eight official 'pilots' of the national Climate Prosperity Project," said Dr. Marc A. Weiss, Chairman of the Climate Prosperity Project and Chairman and CEO of Global Urban Development. "Under Governor Markell's bold and innovative statewide leadership, Delaware's Climate Prosperity Strategy is well positioned to compete very effectively with the other national pilots, including the dynamic regional clean technology initiatives by Silicon Valley, Seattle, Portland and Denver," added Weiss, who lives in Rehoboth Beach. 

Specifically, Markell's strategy for growing the economy and creating jobs while protecting the environment focuses on: 

Achieving Green Savings by creating the Delaware Modernization Service in partnership with the Sustainable Energy Utility.  The Service will audit existing homes and businesses for needed energy efficiency improvements and provide small grants for modernization.

Taking Advantage of Green Opportunities by facilitating a partnership between the state, our businesses, and our labor community to conduct a thorough analysis of the regional, national and global renewable energy and energy efficiency supply chains, and of the potential for Delaware’s businesses and workers to be a part of them.   We will identify how our businesses can immediately participate in the sustainable economy, how they can engage in more efficient production processes, and how they may develop products and services that are more green, to reach local and global markets. The state will also initiate partnerships to create a Green Global Supply Chain Service – helping small businesses to understand their place within the global green supply chain, identifying markets and connecting small businesses to them. 

Building Green Talent by partnering with our state's educational institutions to develop eco-knowledge networks in marine energy, electric vehicle conversion, life sciences, green financial services, sustainable agriculture, high efficiency solar, and climate prosperity-economic development.  The networks are meant to establish talent hubs in these areas, and eventually new businesses in these industries, given the concentration of expertise and talent.  Strategic planning would include the holistic examination of the components for these industries and facilitated networking to make Delaware viable as talent hubs. The state will also partner with our community colleges, vocational-technical schools, and high schools to develop a green workforce for Delaware.  That workforce will be educated and trained to modernize Delaware’s commercial, industrial, and residential buildings and to design and manufacture specialized green technologies.  The Delaware Green Talent Initiative will ensure that new workforce entrants as well as those who are changing careers receive job counseling, placement help, and ongoing assistance. Examples include  DelTech’s training program for windsmiths, and DelTech’s developing curriculums for Certified Environmental Review and Certified Environmental Manager (green building-related).

Last Updated: Monday, 05-Aug-2013 15:25:00 EDT
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