Although it is rarely talked about in today’s news, clean energy jobs continue to grow in America and have been doing so since the Great Recession.
The solar industry alone has created 1 out of 80 jobs that pay an average of $21/hour. Not to mention, they have hired more veterans than any other industry and retrained coal works while also providing jobs for oil and gas workers who have lost their jobs.
When you include wind, LED lighting, and other clean energy categories along with the solar industry, the number of created jobs is closer to one in 33.
These jobs are blue-collar construction and manufacturing jobs that offer a higher pay than the standard non-union manufacturing jobs. The vast majority of solar and wind workers are trained in less than six months because their previous work experience and training is completely transferable.
Wind technician is the fastest growing job category according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, expanding twice as much as the next-fastest growing job.
Tens of thousands of people were employed via the manufacturing arms of the solar and wind industries due to making pieces and parts in the United States last year. This number grew by over 20,000 people from 2014.
This number is actually expected to continue to grow at this pace for the next 5 years.
Clean energy is mistakenly seen as a passive and precious solution for a future society, even though it is much, much more than that.
The energy might be clean, but the work and the jobs are rooted in dirt, sweat, and back-breaking labor as any American endeavor and even more lasting.
The American energy economy is changing, and changing rapidly. Clean energy and energy efficiency are where the growth is happening. Millions of people can be moved from coal mining, low-tech manufacturing, and even oil and gas into well-paying jobs that don’t negatively impact the health of people and the planet.
We can empower all Americans to work together for a stronger future by re-branding clean energy.