There are no such things as ‘Green Jobs” – there are only those the either increase or reduce the ‘resource intensity of society’.
The societies that enable this by tax and incentives and the organisations that take the opportunities this creates, will be the ones that survive our transition to a low carbon future .
Green Jobs Reality and Rhetoric
In an article entitled “Will Green Jobs Become the New Greenwash?”, Joel Makower asks the reader:
“Could it be deemed a good thing that everyone is talking about green jobs, even though they don’t necessarily know what that means? Or do we need standards and definitions that help us gauge how well we’re really doing? “………………..
………………..The Green Jobs Mirage?
Al Gore has famously stated that the coming environmental revolution promises to be bigger than the Industrial Revolution and happen faster than the Technology Revolution. With such a sea change occurring in front of our eyes, it’s no wonder we sometimes stare in disbelief: “Is this really happening?” If we can’t define it, yet less see it, does it exist?
Consider these facts excerpted from Joel’s article:
• The Apollo Alliance’s New Apollo Program proposes an investment of $500 billion over 10 years to create 5 million green-collar jobs in a range of industries including renewable energy; energy efficiency; transit and transportation; and research, development and deployment of cutting-edge clean energy technologies.
• The Center for American Progress and the Political Economy Research Institute call for spending$100 billion over two years to create 2 million jobs in building retrofitting, expansion of the transit and freight rail grids, construction of a “smart” electrical grid, wind and solar power, and next-gen biofuels.
• A report prepared by Global Insight for the U.S. Conference of Mayors forecasts that renewable power generation, building retrofitting, and renewable transportation fuels will together generate 1.7 million new jobs by 2018 and another 846,000 related engineering, legal, research and consulting positions. That total jumps to 3.5 million jobs by 2028 and 4.2 million by 2038.
• A study by the American Solar Energy Society asserts that the renewable energy and energy-efficiency industries represented more than 9 million jobs and $1.04 billion in U.S. revenue in 2007, 95 percent in private industry, and could mushroom to as many as 37 million jobs by 2030 — more than 17 percent of all anticipated U.S. employment.
• A report from the Information Technology & Innovation Foundation predicts that a $50 billion investment in the smart grid over five years “would create approximately 239,000 new or retained U.S. jobs for each of the 5 years on average.”
“Proposes,” “call for spending,” “forecasts,” “asserts” and “predicts” all characterize the potential for this sector. But the rhetoric’s yet to become a reality, right?………………