Promoting renewable energy industries is key to generating jobs and easing dependence on foreign oil — but the U.S. is lagging behind China in its investment in renewables, U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu said February 19. According to the Associated Press, Sec. Chu warned that China’s investment of $9 billion per month to diversify energy sources away from coal far exceeds America’s spending. Chu tried to rally support for the Obama administration’s energy plan, and announced that more than $8 billion in federal loan guarantees will go to building 100 new nuclear reactors in the U.S. over the next 20 years. Chu noted nuclear energy can be generated on demand, unlike wind and solar power, which are dependent upon weather changes.