The world is in financial turmoil. Stock markets are collapsing and many countries are in a recession. This means that thousands are losing their jobs as unemployment increases all over the world. Such grim fiscal times threaten to put a damper on green development – but green development could be what saves the masses. The solution for the economy could also be the solution for the environment.
The greening of nations will create millions of jobs worldwide; while shielding consumers from rising fossil fuel prices and carbon emissions. Green jobs are not the high-tech, sophisticated jobs that require extensive qualifications which were created by the Internet and biotechnology booms. There is a green job for almost anyone.
A $100 billion investment in a clean energy economy over two years would create 2 million new jobs with a significant portion of these jobs helping to revive struggling construction and manufacturing sectors.1
Green jobs include manufacturing solar panels, wind turbines, insulating homes and also servicing wind turbines. Retrofitting homes to improve their energy efficiency will also make scores of jobs. Some of the new jobs that will be created include Electricians, Heating/Air Conditioning Installers, Carpenters, Construction Equipment Operators, Roofers, Insulation Workers, Carpenter Helpers, Industrial Truck Drivers, Construction Managers and Building Inspectors.2
Greener industries will pave the way for a sustainable and greener economy, an economy that will be able to operate using clean technologies, natural resources and low carbon emissions. This type of green technology will make living green a lifestyle choice and not a fashionable trend. Investor support should also be available as clean energy has been among the fastest growing sectors in the venture capital and investment banking worlds – in 2007 global investment in clean energy climbed 60% to $150 billion.3
The American president Barak Obama is a political figure that will aid such development. He has pledged $150 billion over 10 years to promote clean technologies.
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1. Center for American Progress. "Green Recovery." October 2008.
2. Center for American Progress. “Green Recovery.” September 2008.
3. UNEP. http://www.unep.org/Documents.Multilingual/Default.asp?DocumentID=538&ArticleID=5849&l=en
Bryan Walsh, 2008, Saving the Working Class With Green-Colar Jobs. TIME [internet] 20 October
Available at: http://www.time.com/time/printout/0,8816,1852183,00.html
Accessed 6 February 2009
Repower America (2008) Renewable Generation [Online] (Date of update unknown)
Available at: http://www.repoweramerica.org/elements/renewable-generation/
[Accessed 18 December 2008]
Repower America (2008) Energy Efficiency [Online] (Date of update unknown)
Available at: http://www.repoweramerica.org/elements/energy-efficiency/
[Accessed 18 December 2008]
Green workers installing a solar