By John Ostapkovich

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – With all the controversy about natural gas production from Pennsylvania’s Marcellus Shale region, you might wonder where green energy fits in. Quite nicely, says an advocate.

Judith Albert, director of the Environmental Entrepreneurs Initiative, says Pennsylvania as a whole is in the middle of the pack in terms of green energy, meaning solar, wind, biomass and the like, but the tri-state region is actually 5th nationwide.

“Philadelphia is what’s called a Solar America city. There’s a Department of Energy program, which has been funding cities around the country to develop comprehensive plans to develop solar technology and Philadelphia as well as Pittsburgh have taken advantage of that.”

He also cites the Campus Energy Efficiency Program among colleges as a big contributor. Still, any time solar comes up nowadays, so does the Solyndra federal loan-guarantee boondoggle.

Albert says it’s not always ‘other people’s money’, “This past quarter, ending September 30th, there was actually more venture capital money going into green projects than ever before, so I think this is something that businesses continue to think they have to do for the sake of their own businesses.”

Especially since things like energy efficiency save money.

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