Cleantech, Ecotech, And The Clean Jobs Index
Courtesy of Pat Byington, The Green Register Editor
“Cleantech is dead, like the Internet was in 2000” ~ Mitch Lowe, partner with digital green accelerator Greenstart
Katie Fehrenbacher, Senior Writer & Features Editor for GigaOM, used Lowe’s provocative quote as the title for her Nov. 16, 2012 GigaOM article. Katie explains, “Essentially, the work done in the late 90′s for the internet laid the foundation for today’s massive internet ecosystem, and for cleantech, Lowe thinks the last 8 years have similarly laid the foundation for the future of cleantech. Limited partners may not have seen terrific returns over the past 8 years, said Lowe, but he thinks we’re now entering an incredibly exciting time for investing in cleantech, and specifically for digital green technologies.”
With homage to Mark Twain, clearly, reports of cleantech’s death have been exaggerated…
Our proof that cleantech is alive and well comes to us from personal experience: We not only opened the first and only college focused entirely on training students for renewable energy jobs; we also created the first-ever “Clean Jobs Index”, which aggregates all the available clean jobs in the U.S.
After nearly a year of research, the Clean Jobs Index found that there were more than three million clean jobs available across the United States (3,014,785) in 2012. That’s approximately a quarter of a million job listings per month, on average! The Index breaks down clean jobs by state, with links to local jobs listings. In addition to providing objective information on jobs, the Index also looks at a variety of sustainability factors that affect citizens’ lifestyles, including alternative fueling stations, LEED projects, total energy consumption, energy efficiency, green pricing, net metering and state incentives.
To determine what jobs are deemed clean jobs, Ecotech used the “green jobs” definition from the U.S. Department of Labor – Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), which states that green jobs are either: (1) Jobs in businesses that produce goods or provide services that benefit the environment or conserve natural resources, or (2) jobs in which workers’ duties involve making their establishment’s production processes more environmentally friendly or use fewer natural resources (http://www.bls.gov/green/). Ecotech then took this definition and used data from Burning Glass International, whose patented job aggregation technology searches for job listings from more than 17,000 sources, to create the Clean Jobs Index list of available positions.
There are several things that help make our Clean Jobs Index unique:
- It is an ongoing project, not a one-time “our state is greener than your state” report.
- It incorporates not only “here and now” sustainability indicators, such as LEED certifications, but also what is “in the pipeline,” such as registered LEED projects.
- Best of all, the Clean Jobs Index not only incorporates actual clean jobs as part of its index calculation, it allows you to view and even apply for listed positions via links to the original job postings.
Highlights from the Clean Jobs Index as of January 15, 2013 include:
- Number of Clean Jobs in the U.S. in 2012: 3,014,785
- Oregon is the number one state for the entire Clean Jobs Index, taking all factors into account. (See how other states rank at www.ecotechinstitute.com/cleanjobsindex).
- Alaska is number one for clean jobs per 100,000 residents.
- Idaho generates the highest percentage of energy by renewables at 85 percent.
- Minnesota is number one for renewable energy and efficiency state incentives.
- California ranks lowest in energy usage per 100,000 residents.
- Massachusetts ranks highest for energy efficiency.
- Maryland has the highest number of LEED projects per capita.
- Hawaii has the highest number of customers on net metering energy per capita.
Ecotech Institute gathered data from a variety of independent research entities that develop and regularly publish cleantech information. Sources include a variety of government agencies, nonprofit organizations and businesses, including: U.S. Energy Information Administration, U.S. Department of Energy, U.S. Green Building Council, American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy and Database of State Incentives for Renewables & Efficiency.
In other words, don’t take our word for it—check our sources. But we believe you will see for yourself that cleantech is alive and well in America via the best indicator of all: real American jobs.
About Ecotech Institute
Ecotech Institute is the first and only college entirely focused on preparing America’s workforce for careers in renewable energy and sustainability and is accredited by the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges. Launched in April 2010 in Denver, Colorado, it offers six highly practical renewable energy degree programs that provide graduates with skills valued by today’s alternative renewable energy employers. Classes start once per quarter and applications are always accepted. Financial assistance is available to those who qualify. Ecotech Institute is a division of Education Corporation of America. For more information about Ecotech Institute, visit ecotechinstitute.com or call 877-326-5576.
Image Credit: Ecotech Institute