Google continues its push to become leader of the free world, releasing last week an updated version of “Clean Energy 2030”, a comprehensive proposal that would “drive trillions of dollars of new investment in clean energy and create millions of new jobs.” Four of the proposal’s major themes are: keep investing in renewable energy, build a smarter electricity grid, make home energy use more efficient, and “Green the Government.” “Google's proposal will benefit the US by increasing energy security, protecting the environment, creating new jobs, and helping to create the conditions for long-term prosperity. Some of the necessary funds will be public, but much of it will come from the private sector -- a typical approach for infrastructure and high technology investments.”

Google believes that its proposal will reduce:

• Fossil fuel-based electricity generation by 88%
• Vehicle oil consumption by 44%
• Dependence on imported oil (currently 10 million barrels per day) by 37%
• Electricity-sector CO2 emissions by 95%
• Personal vehicle sector CO2 emissions by 44%
• US CO2 emissions overall by 49% (41% from today's CO2 emission level)

The proposal also makes a strong push to make plug-in vehicles mainstream, with 90 percent of vehicles being these by 2030.

Eric Schmidt speaks about solutions for energy security

The plan would cost around 3.86 trillion dollars, but Google believes it will result in savings of $4.68 trillion, and would create 9 million new jobs in the electrical efficiency and renewable energy sectors

With its philanthropic unit,, Google has made $50 million in renewable energy grants and investments, launched initiatives for renewable energy and electric cars, and has partnered with GE to build smart grid infrastructure. Earlier this month, it launched Google Flu Trends, which tracks influenza outbreaks faster than government services can.

By Mark Alvarez