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Tens of thousands of green energy jobs have been created since U.S. President Barack Obama entered the Oval Office four years ago, but some experts say if you’re still looking for one of these jobs, you’re not alone. In fact, you’re in the company of hundreds of thousands of other job seekers. There simply should be more of these green energy jobs by now, experts say, so the president’s initial promise to put half a million people to work in the green energy sector hasn’t quite materialized.
According to the Brookings Institution, the World Resources Institute and the Breakthrough Institute, 70,000 jobs were added to clean technology from 2007 to 2010. That number is far less than the 224,500 jobs that the White House has acknowledged creating via its clean-energy stimulus funds.
By 2014, about $11 billion each year would have been spent on clean technology by the federal government. This number is essential in that green energy technology only has a chance of competing against gas and oil with the help of government subsidies. Of particular significance is a production tax credit in the wind energy field – a field that has put 78,000 people to work – that is set to expire at the end of 2012 unless Congress chooses to renew it. Experts say that half of the wind energy jobs will die without the presence of this tax credit.
Even though actual jobs numbers in the green energy industry today pale in comparison with the federal government’s initial goal for green energy job creation, the green energy industry indeed has made a huge impact on the American economy. Wind energy jobs, in particular, went up from 2,500 in 2004 to 30,000 currently.
In addition, the U.S. military is tapping into the benefits of biomass, wind and solar plants. The question is, what green jobs goals will be set and actually met during the next presidential term, and how will the next president negatively or positive affect your future green job dream? Share your thoughts with us.
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