Get a Job and Go Green

Question:

“I’ve heard of green jobs and supported clean energy organizations that create jobs for folks. What other areas create green jobs for workers?” – Shawn from Phoenix, AZ

Answer:

Your support of clean energy organizations is a great way to empower the creation of jobs that do not deplete our natural resources or destroy our environment.

Types of Green Jobs

Energy efficiency is another big sector that is creating green jobs nationally. Jobs such as energy auditors, energy concierges, smart meter installers, and weatherization technicians are some positions you can look in to if you’re interested in getting involved in this field.

Locally there are public, private, and non-profit sector initiatives that are creating green jobs that promote sustainability. Consider the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) definition of green jobs, which says positions are doing green work if they are:

  1. Jobs in businesses that produce goods or provide services that benefit the environment or conserve natural resources
  2. Jobs in which workers’ duties involve making their establishment’s production processes more environmentally friendly or use fewer natural resources

Following this definition, the factory worker who manufactures bamboo (a renewable resource that does not deplete forests) flooring, cabinetry and countertops, and the sales representative for the company that installs these items both have green jobs.

A facilities manager who procures appliances/machines that are energy efficient, sources supplies that are produced sustainably, and teaches employees how to conserve water and recycle items responsibly has a green job too.

Goodwill and the Green Jobs Sector

Goodwill green construction traineesAnd don’t forget, Goodwill creates and trains for green jobs as well!

Goodwill diverts more than two billion pounds of clothing and household goods every year from landfills by recovering the value in people’s unwanted material goods. Goodwill’s material handlers and donation processors ensure that the goods donated to our stores are sorted appropriately so that items that should be recycled are treated differently than items that can be sold.

We are also proud to have trained people all over the country to enter the renewable energy, energy efficiency, and green construction industries through a Department of Labor grant. Some of our graduates are assessing the energy use of residences; weatherizing bird sanctuaries, installing solar thermal systems; and fabricating ducts for high efficiency heating, ventilating, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems to maximize efficiency of systems — just to name a few.

Be a Green Jobs Generator

Finally, remember that you can help create green jobs by continuing to demand goods and services that promote sustainable practices.

Consider purchasing items that are grown locally and with sustainable practices; the increased demand for such food will create local jobs for the labor-intensive work of producing food without pesticides.

Additionally, taking public transportation or supporting local policies that increase transit projects will create jobs for drivers, conductors, mechanics, engineers, construction workers, cement masons, concrete finishers, electricians, form builders, iron workers and power equipment operators.

It’s not difficult to see that when we think about how to protect our resources and promote practices that allow us to meet the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs, there’s plenty of work to do.

1 comment on “Get a Job and Go Green
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