Betting on Green Jobs

August 7, 2009 - 12:30pm -- Anonymous

"It's inevitable, as the money really starts to flow into infrastructure programs, particularly green projects, there will be job growth here over the next year," says John Challenger, chief executive officer of Challenger, Gray & Christmas, a global outplacement company based in Chicago, in an article on "Now Hiring: Green-Collar Workers" in Business Week.

Students are lining up to enter Wind Turbine Technician training and college degree programs around the country, and it's no mystery why. Kristjon Luetgers graduated from the Iowa Lakes Community College program two years ago and now works as a wind turbine technician for Vestas earning about $60,000 a year. As unemployment numbers continue to climb, displaced workers and young people looking for career opportunities see green-collar jobs as a path to their future.

LM Glasfiber workers in Grand Forks, ND
Workers assembling wind turbine blades at LM Glasfiber
in Grand Forks, ND. photo by tuey, some rights reserved

Business Week and PayScale surveyed The Best-Paid Green Jobs with Environmental Engineering Manager and Sustainability Director at the top with over $100,000, Wind Turbine Technician in the middle at over $50,000, and Solar Energy System Installer at the base at about $40,000.

"We project that about a million jobs will come out of the stimulus investment," says Phil Angelides, chairman of the San Francisco-based Apollo Alliance, a coalition of labor, business, and environmental groups that advocates for clean energy, according to the Business Week article.

Looks like Green collar is the new White and Blue as we work to clean up both the planet and the economy.