- - Tuesday, August 7, 2012

LAS VEGAS — The politics of renewable energy is heading the agenda in battleground Nevada, where Democratic Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid is hosting a fifth annual green-energy conference at a Las Vegas Strip resort.

Mr. Reid and Interior Secretary Kenneth L. Salazar opened the Tuesday event touting the start of a 12-square-mile wind-energy farm in Nevada’s White Pine County.

Pattern Energy’s Spring Valley project is the first major wind farm in Nevada.

Ending the conference will be an afternoon address by Bill Clinton, a “fireside chat” involving the former president and his former White House chief of staff, John Podesta, and a closing speech by Mr. Reid.

Clean wind, solar and geothermal energy, and the failure of some projects are key issues in the campaigns of President Obama and Republican hopeful Mitt Romney.


Bernanke: Education costs should be wise investment

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke says students need to be careful when investing in their education.

Mr. Bernanke says taking on debt to pay for college can be an important way of increasing one’s earning potential. But higher education can also become a financial burden if it doesn’t lead to a good job, he warns.

“You’ve got to make smart investments,” Mr. Bernanke said during a town-hall-style meeting at the Fed with teachers from around the country.

Student-loan debt has steadily increased since the Great Recession and totaled more than $900 billion in March, according the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.

Mr. Bernanke urged students to do their homework before taking out loans. They should know what kind of jobs and salaries they can expect to acquire with their degrees.

The unemployment rate for college graduates was 4.1 percent in July. That’s well below the national rate of 8.3 percent and the rate of 8.7 percent for those with only a high school diploma.


Obama holds private fundraiser at W Hotel

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