Friday, July 3, 2009

Obama: American Clean Energy and Security Act Will Create Millions of Green Jobs

Yesterday, after a meeting with CEO’s from the nation’s most innovative energy companies, President Barack Obama told reporters that the global warming legislation passed by the House last week and currently being debated in the Senate will create new clean energy jobs for America and reduce the nation’s greenhouse gas emissions.

The work of building a clean energy economy was begun in earnest with passage of the American Relief and Recovery Act earlier this year. The stimulus package is already creating green jobs, according to the President.

“I'm pleased to say that we've achieved more in the past few months to create a new clean energy economy than we had achieved in many decades before,” he told reporters gathered at the White House.  “The recovery plan will double our country's supply of renewable energy, and is already creating new clean energy jobs.”

Obama went on to say that the American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009, the climate bill now awaiting a vote in the U.S. Senate, has the potential to create millions of new green jobs and curb global warming pollution.

“And last Friday, the House of Representatives passed an extraordinary piece of legislation that would make renewable energy the profitable kind of energy in America,” Obama went on to say. "It will reduce our dependence on foreign oil.  It will prevent the worst consequences of climate change.  And above all, it holds the promise of millions of new jobs -- jobs, by the way, that can't be outsourced.”


Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Climate Bill Will Create Green Jobs, According To One Energy Company

The global warming and clean energy bill that was passed by the U.S. House of Representatives last will create new green jobs in energy efficiency and renewable energy, at least according to one energy company. Today, Puget Sound Energy issued a statement to the press expressing it’s the support for the American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009.

“Our customers have told us they support renewable energy and energy efficiency programs, and their elected representatives in the House have heard that message,” according to Stephen Reynolds, the companies CEO and President.

PSE has had first hand experience in creating green jobs. The company owns and operates two wind farms in the state of Washington. Construction of the two wind facilities created about 175 temporary green jobs, and they currently employ 50 permanent full time employees.

PSE also offers incentives, including grants and rebates, designed to help customers pay for services that save energy and conserve natural gas. For example, it offers customers a rebate for up to $1,600 for home insulation.  The company estimates that these measures have created 450 new jobs working directly with the utility or with local businesses that provide related services.

“Combining both renewable energy and energy efficiency is the right step for both the climate and our customers,” Reynolds also said. “We’ve seen first hand that both areas can create new, green jobs and other benefits from renewable energy credits, as well as help our customers better manage their energy costs through using natural gas and electricity wisely.”

PSE isn’t just another renewable energy company hoping that government support will trigger new investments in clean energy. The company's diverse energy portfolio includes shared ownership of several coal-fired power plants in Montana, and also owns several natural gas-powered plants. Hydropower makes up the bulk of the company’s power portfolio. 


Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Survey Finds More Than 50,000 Green Jobs in Oregon

A new report has estimated that Oregon was home to 51,402 green jobs in 2008.  The report, The Greening of Oregon’s Workforce: Jobs, Wages, and Training, was based on a survey of employers and was produced by the Oregon Employment Department. 

About half of Oregon’s green jobs were found to be in the construction, retail, and waste services industries. A little more than a quarter of the state’s green jobs workforce worked as carpenters, farm workers, truck drivers, hazardous materials removal workers, and landscaping or grounds keeping personnel.

Green jobs in Oregon paid slightly higher than other jobs on average. The average hourly wage for green jobs in Oregon was $22.61.

Green jobs in Oregon prove to be relatively accessible to the average worker. Close to two-thirds of the state’s green jobs required no more than a high school education, although those that required higher education did pay better. Only a third of green jobs in Oregon required a special license or certificate.

The number of green jobs in Oregon is expected to rise by 14 percent between 2008 and 2010.

A green job was defined as a job providing services or producing products in the following areas:

  1. Increasing energy efficiency
  2. Producing renewable energy
  3. Preventing, reducing, or mitigating environmental degradation
  4. Cleaning up and restoring the natural environment
  5. Providing education, consulting, policy promotion, accreditation, trading and offsets, or similar services supporting the above