White House Rural Council Blog

  • Flex Fuel Pumps and a Green Energy Economy

    As gasoline prices continue to rise across the country, USDA is working with farmers and entrepreneurs to secure our nation’s long-term energy future and give Americans more choices about where to spend their gas dollars: at home or abroad.

    For the past two years, USDA has worked to support the research, investment, and infrastructure necessary to build a nationwide biofuels industry that creates jobs in every corner of the country. 

    USDA has a long history of helping Americans with their energy choices. Our Rural Energy for America Program (REAP) has helped thousands of rural businesses and farmers improve the efficiency of their equipment or produce their own renewable energy by installing solar panels or wind turbines. 

    Now we are helping people understand that this popular program can also help gas stations install special pumps to provide biofuels to motorists across the county. 

  • Weekly Wrap Up: America's Energy Future

    Your quick look at the week that was on WhiteHouse.gov.

    Read the Transcript  |  Download Video: mp4 (586MB) | mp3 (56MB)

    America's Secure Energy Future: President Obama continued his focus on building a clean energy economy with events throughout the week. He toured a shipping facility in Maryland with Energy Secretary Chu and Transportation Secretary LaHood to highlight his Green Fleet Initiative, then traveled to Philadelphia for a town hall at Gamesa Technology, a wind turbine manufacturer. Back at the White House, Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar sat down with students to discuss development of clean, American-made energy sources. The Department of Energy blogged about Philadelphia's efforts to install energy efficient lighting.

  • What You Missed: Open for Questions on Energy Security with Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar

    On Wednesday, Interior Secretary Ken Salazar and the White House's Kalpen Modi hosted a live chat on President Obama's Blueprint for a Secure Energy Future. Secretary Salazar took questions from viewers online, on Facebook, and college students from around the country who attended the event at the White House.

    Check out the video and use the links below to jump to your favorite questions.

    Download Video: mp4 (333MB) | mp3 (32MB)

  • One Year Later: Remembering the Miners of Montcoal

    Ed. note: This was originally posted on Work In Progress, the Department of Labor blog. Read another blog post on this topic on the Middle Class Task Force blog.

    One year ago today, in West Virginia, 29 men died in the worst mine disaster in 40 years.

    Wives lost husbands. Parents lost sons. Children lost fathers. Neighbors lost friends.  And a community lost a big part of its soul.

    Since that day, I have been convinced that the best way to honor these men is to do everything in our power so that a tragedy like this never happens again.

    The administration has taken many steps to make that goal a reality.  The Mine Safety and Health Administration (a part of the U.S. Department of Labor) has made available unprecedented resources to find out what exactly happened on April 5, 2010 and we are making sure that the U.S. Department of Justice can fully prosecute any wrongdoers.

  • Weekly Wrap Up: Healthy Anniversary!

    Your quick look at the week that was on WhiteHouse.gov

    Protecting Civilians in Libya: As U.S. forces participate in a U.N. coalition to establish a no-fly zone over Libya, President Obama spoke on the humanitarian importance of our mission in North Africa. He also answered questions from the media during press conferences in Chile and El Salvador.

    President Obama Confers With Tom Donilon, Bill Daley, and Ben Rhodes

    President Barack Obama confers with National Security Advisor Tom Donilon, right, Chief of Staff Bill Daley, left, and Ben Rhodes, Deputy National Security Advisor for Strategic Communications, following a conference call on Libya with his national security team, in San Salvador, El Salvador, March 23, 2011. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

    The Affordable Care Act Turns One: On March 23, 2010, President Obama signed the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. In the 12 months since, millions of Americans have benefited from improvements to the American health care system. WhiteHouse.gov had a whole week of coverage:

  • Weekly Wrap Up: Working with Small Business

    Take quick look at the week of February 21, 2011:
    Small Business Forum: President Obama travels to Cleveland, Ohio, to visit the Winning the Future Forum on Small Business. He met with dozens of small business leaders, and even stopped by a live online chat with Austan Goolsbee to answer your questions. Also, SBA Administrator Karen Mills chaired a breakout session on entrepreneurship.
    Behind-the-Scenes Video: President Obama hosts a screening of Thurgood at the White House movie theater -- an HBO film about the life and career of Thurgood Marshall, the remarkable Civil Rights lawyer and the first African-American Supreme Court Justice.
    Download Video: mp4 (27.3MB)

    Turmoil in Libya: President Obama says the violence in Libya is "outrageous" and "unacceptable," and that his Administration is looking at the "full range of options we have to respond to this crisis." Watch the video.