Thursday, April 3, 2008

Green-Collar Jobs - a political agenda or a real new job category?

I learned a new term job. No longer do we just have white-collar and blue-collar jobs but we now also have green-collar jobs.

I went to Wikipedia and here's how they describe a green-collar worker - A green-collar worker is a worker who is employed in the environmental sectors of the economy, or in the agricultural sector. Environmental green-collar workers satisfy the demand for green development. Generally, they implement environmentally-conscious design, policy, and technology to improve conservation and sustainability.

There is much more than this on the Wikipedia website so feel free to click through the link and read more.

I also ran across this video on CNN that talks about this new wave of jobs that are emerging. The video tells the story of a start-up company that makes solar energy panels. This start-up decides to locate themselves in Toledo, Ohio due to the availability of highly-skilled factory workers that have been laid off from the automotive industry. The video also estimates that over the next 20 years 3 million new green-collar jobs will be created all over the country, with the right incentives and tax credits.

I decided to do some more searching on-line and an article on John Edwards website showed up - surprised? The title of his article is, "Building One America in the New Energy Economy with Green Collar Jobs"

Check out this quote from the article...Today, Edwards outlined his "Green Collar Jobs" initiative to train and employ at least 150,000 workers a year in new energy economy jobs. He will dedicate 50,000 Stepping Stone jobs—subsidized employment that form part of Edwards' anti-poverty plan—to energy-related occupations. In addition, the Green Collar Jobs training initiative will work with employers, unions, community colleges and high schools to prepare and engage the next generation of workers.

There were pages and pages of articles on-line and I could have spent all day reading these and updating myself on this new concept. But, I just didn't have the time...

I'm all for real jobs that are created and especially when these jobs can be filled by workers that have been laid off. But, when the government decides to step in with incentives and tax credits I just can't help to be skeptical.

I'll just have to read more about this...

What's your take on this?


Alan said...

Yes! The demand is booming.We even got some enquiry from the line some times. It seems there is large manpower shortage for the induatry worldwide.

Sean said...

As far as the government incentives deals: I think the gov doesn't want all of our energy costs to come from places like Russia, Venzuela, and Arabia, when we can make a good amount of our own energy here. Energy that won't run out or emit large amounts of carbon. Gov has a responsibility to its taxpayers to help them create the best way to gain an international trade advantage. Even if the gov didn't offer incentives, the incentives of eco conscious consumers would be enough to make green collar jobs a success. Thank you for letting me comment.


Karen Rice, Northeast PA said...

Ya know, I'm all for alternative, renewable energy, but not at the cost of food production.

Food prices are going higher because grain farmers are now growing corn for ethanol.

Where is our food coming from? I don't like the idea that I have to search hard to find "Made in USA" on my FOOD.

So, I'd like to see the government offering incentives for a LOT of American industry - not just fuel and "green" stuff. What good will going "green" do us if we all die from the cheap crap produced in China? Seriously - the talapia I used to buy that was originally from ALASKA now says "Product of China" on the package.

We are such a nation of extremists. Can't we be BALANCED? Can't we be kind to the environment and feed & support our own people TOO???

I don't know about you but I'm not happy about imported foods because our farmers are now growing fuel.

This is probably more than slightly off topic and I apologize for my rant, but I'm a big HATER of "Popular Bandwagons" and in particular ones that are politically motivated and probably hollow at the core. Great, grow corn for fuel - but let's have some of it to eat, too, okay?