REFILE-With corporate help, Obama announces actions on renewable energy
(In 7th paragraph, corrects day of week to Thursday, not Monday)
WASHINGTON May 9 (Reuters) - President Barack Obama on Friday will announce executive orders to increase the use of solar panels, boost energy efficiency in federal buildings and train more people to work in the renewable energy field, the White House said.
The president, who will make the announcement during a visit to Wal-Mart in Mountain View, California, will also highlight commitments by corporations to lift solar generation at their facilities. Wal-Mart, Apple Inc, Yahoo Inc, Google Inc and Ikea were among the companies making such commitments.
Several financial institutions, including Citigroup Inc and Goldman Sachs Group Inc, were announcing new plans for "large scale investment and innovative programs" to develop solar and renewable energy installations, the White House said.
Obama's executive actions would support efforts at community colleges so that 50,000 workers would join the solar industry by 2020, it said.
Another initiative would press for $2 billion in energy efficiency upgrades for federal buildings over the next three years, building on another $2 billion commitment from 2011.
Actions to strengthen building codes were also part of the mix.
"Investing in solar and efficiency makes sense to reduce our carbon emissions, but also for our pocketbooks and for our economy," said Dan Utech, an energy adviser to Obama, during a conference call on Thursday to preview Obama's announcement.
He said the U.S. solar energy industry had expanded dramatically under Obama's watch, with installations increasing to an amount enough to power more than 2 million homes. Continuación...