Green Technology has given architects several things to rejoice about. It is helping designers become more responsible and conscious about the impacts of their buildings on the environment and the future; it is also sparking more creative approaches to design while engaging technological innovation. And perhaps most importantly, it is providing new jobs in the market for architects, engineers, researchers and manufacturers. So how can each of these professions benefit from this boosted interest in sustainability and renewable technology? Read on for tips on how and where to acquire a “green job”.
1. Traditional job growth is trudging along at a rate of 3.7% while clean economy job growth is pulling ahead with 9.1% based on figures between 1998 and 2007. This “clean economy” refers to goods and services that are produced to benefit the economy. This includes renewable energy manufacturing, recyclable and reusable materials and products that reduce the use of harsh chemicals and production of waste during their manufacturing processes.
2. Within the growth rate of 9.1% in clean economy jobs, renewable energy holds four of the top five segments with the highest job growth. The top five are: wind/ocean power, solar thermal energy, wind energy, carbon storage/management and solar photovoltaics.
3. Of the top five segments of the clean economy, hydropower employs the greatest percentage of workers, topping at 40% in 2010.
4. The industry has broken down the levels at which workers are hired within the clean economy: scientists and engineers make up 10.1%, “green collar” employees (those that have a median wage that falls within 20 percentage points of the national minimum wage) make up 68.7% and low wage/low skill occupations make up 6.3%.
5. But among those employed by the clean economy, these employees are typically paid more for their work than for traditional jobs. The median wage of a typical job within the green economy is $44,.000 while the median wage for the traditional economy is at $38,616.
6. The clean economy is helping the U.S. continue to be competitive in the world market, particularly by keeping manufacturing local. Overall, only 9% of U.S. jobs are in manufacturing, whereas in the clean economy, 26% of jobs are in manufacturing.
7. So what exactly does the clean economy manufacture? Solar techonologies, wind-energy technologies, electrical vehicle technologies, water-efficient products, green chemical products, sustainable forestry products, recycled content products, and energy-saving consumer products.
8. These jobs are turning up in large metropolitan areas of the United States. Look out for New York and New Jersey in the East with the highest number at 152,034 jobs, followed by Los Angeles, Long Beach and Santa Ana in the West with 89,592 jobs.
For more information on the best green job resources, check out these websites: sustainlane.com greenjobs.com cleanedge.com idealist.org sustainablebusiness.com jobs.treehugger.com or Google “Green Jobs Guidebook”