The Top Five Reasons to Go After Green Jobs

The Green Collar Economy: How One Solution Can Fix Our Two Biggest Problems is a 2008 book by Van Jones.
The Green Collar Economy: How One Solution Can Fix Our Two Biggest Problems is a 2008 book by Van Jones.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics classifies green jobs as jobs in industries or companies that create products or services that help the environment or preserve natural resources, or jobs that entail reducing the environmental footprint of production practices.

As of a recent report using data from 2010, the Economic Policy Institute says that the top five states for green jobs are Vermont, Pennsylvania, Washington, Colorado and Oregon.

Here are five reasons that people are pursuing green jobs.

1. Green jobs are growing more quickly than the economy in general. Even though we’re still in a recession, one sector that continues to grow is the green industry, despite the stumbling blocks solar and wind are meeting. Ethan Pollack, with the Economic Policy Institute, said, “For every percentage-point increase in an industry’s green intensity, annual employment growth was 0.034 percentage points higher.”

2. States with more green jobs have healthier environments and healthier economies than those that don’t.

3. Green jobs are more accessible to workers who don’t have college degrees. While some positions, such as wind turbine maintenance worker, do require education and certification, many jobs in the green sector either don’t require position-specific training, or require very little.

4. The future looks good for green jobs. Events that climate change contributes to, such as droughts, sea-level rise, and superstorms like Hurricane Sandy, prove that the world has to up its game environmentally. In the forthcoming decades, the country will be intensifying its focus on environmental responsibility. Even in areas where being green isn’t currently widespread, more environmental practices and green jobs will be found.

5. And finally, of course, green jobs help the environment. If you’re a contractor, you’re also helping families and businesses save energy and money. That doesn’t only do good, it feels good.


Credit John Courtney on Google+

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