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Blog Entries from February 1, 2012

Census Bureau and National Urban League Host Forum on Black Population

High and members of the panel

The Commerce Department's U.S. Census Bureau today hosted a forum with the National Urban League on the black population at Black Entertainment Television studios in Washington, D.C. The event highlighted statistics from the 2010 Census, providing a portrait of the black population in the U.S. Following the presentation, an expert panel discussed the statistics and their implications. Kristal Lauren High of Politic365 moderated.

Joining Census Burea Director Robert Groves and other Bureau officials were National Urban League officials, including Marc Morial, chief executive officer and president. Experts on the panel from public and private universities and centers for population, political and economic studies responded to questions submitted via Facebook and Twitter and broadcast on the Census Bureau's Ustream channel.

In his remarks, Groves noted that today is the beginning of Black History Month. In 1976, as part of the nation’s bicentennial, the original 1926 Black History Week was expanded into a month. Each year, U.S. presidents proclaim February as National African-American History Month. The U.S. Census Bureau has gathered data and facts relating to Black History Month in its Facts for Features: February 2012.

Secretary Bryson Travels to Pittsburgh to Tour Energy Company and Meet with Business Leaders

Secretary Bryson Travels to Pittsburgh to Tour Energy Company and Meet with Business Leaders

Secretary Bryson is in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania today, where he has a busy day. He started his day meeting the Western Pennsylvania District Export Council (DEC) over breakfast. He shared the President’s outline for ensuring more items are made in America. The President has proposed an end to tax breaks for businesses that outsource, additional tax relief for those that bring jobs back, and lowering the tax rates for manufacturers, especially high-tech manufacturers. DEC members shared with him what they are hearing from their fellow business leaders about the challenges and successes of exporting into new and expanding markets.

After thanking DEC members for their hard work, Bryson toured Aquion Energy, a Carnegie Mellon University spin off and battery technology company. Bryson was joined by Pittsburgh Mayor Luke Ravenstahl and Aquion CEO Scott Pearson. They toured the development lab, the manufacturing floor, and battery assembly room. Aquion Energy is working on bringing new battery technology to market. This technology is a sodium-ion battery optimized for stationary storage applications with a targeted commercial release of 2012 in applications such as micro-grid support, off-grid generator optimization, and grid-level energy services.

Bryson and Mayor Ravenstahl then headed over to Carnegie Mellon University to participate in a discussion with business leaders and Carnegie Mellon Vice President of Research Rick McCullough. Bryson highlighted the President’s call for new energy economy and the Department of Commerce’s support for manufacturers. To compete in a global economy, U.S. businesses need to build it here and sell it everywhere, which is why Secretary Bryson has agreed to co-chair the national office for the Advanced Manufacturing Partnership. He is also relentlessly advocating for increasing America’s exports and investment in America’s companies, workers and ideas.