Obama wants $5 billion more for clean energy manufacturing

The $5 billion would be on top of the $2.3 billion Congress set aside in the stimulus package for the tax credit. The program has proved immensely popular; the requests for funding exceeds the funds, necessitating the need for the additional $5 billion.

The expansion of 48c is the centerpiece of a new framework the administration is touting to revitalize the manufacturing sector as a whole.

One theme of the policy effort is how to leverage public money to “entice” more private investment. A senior administration official said the $5 billion in public funds could lead to another $15 billion in private investment, creating “tens of thousands of jobs.”

Companies remain skittish about investing since the financial crisis last year that set the world economy in a tumble, the official said. The public money is an inducement to private investment because getting some requires companies have “some skin in the game,” he said.

Some lawmakers have already expressed their support for the idea.