The End of Green Jobs

Solar panel installation

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) issued its last green jobs report in 2011.
Did this mean the end of green jobs?

Obviously not, but it did put an end to unjustified manipulation of reporting on the number of green jobs being created.

Green job creation is the benefit recited ad nauseam by politicians promoting clean energy.

Unfortunately, green job creation isn’t what it was claimed to be.

The report by Spanish economist Gabriel Calzada Álvarez PhD, of the University Juan Carlos, established that 2.2 traditional jobs were lost for every green job created.

The report was attacked by those promoting clean energy, and the concept of green jobs remains a talking point of politicians promoting clean energy.

What’s more damning, however, were the BLS reports on green jobs and how jobs were categorized as green. The revelation of which jobs were green, during Congressional testimony, raised a few eyebrows, to say the least.

In March 2013, the BLS, reported that jobs associated with green goods and services in 2011 amounted to 3.4 million jobs, an increase of 158,000 green jobs over the prior year.

BLS, under questioning, admitted it had a broad definition of what constituted a green job.

It amounted to defining a green job as a job in any capacity, no matter how remotely associated with clean energy, in any facility that could be described as green.

  • If a person swept the floor in a solar-panel facility, it would be counted as a green job.
  • If a person drove a hybrid bus in a city transportation department, it would be counted as a green job.
  • If a person worked in a bicycle shop, it would be counted as a green job.
  • If a person sold recycled goods at the Salvation Army, it would be counted as a green job.
  • If a person collected garbage, it would be counted as a green job.

While collecting garbage is a hard job, for which people don’t get much credit, they can hardly be described as being green. They certainly can’t be remotely associated with clean energy, unless the trash is burned in a power plant, and even that is a stretch.

The person driving a hybrid school bus is doing a commendable job for the community, but the job is hardly green because the bus is a hybrid.

It wasn’t mentioned in the testimony, but taxi cab drivers using hybrids, such as a Prius, could also be classified as green using the BLS model.

The concept of green jobs is fictitious from the outset.

Fundamentally, the job is green if it’s not associated with fossil fuels.

But the greenest jobs of all are not seen as being green.

Forest rangers, farmers, marine biologists, landscapers, fishermen and linemen who work outdoors, mostly with their hands, and who are often involved with promoting and protecting the environment, are not seen as being green.

Green jobs really aren’t about the environment, they are about politics and CO2 emissions.

It’s good the BLS stopped issuing the green jobs report.

Now, if we could just get politicians from talking about fictitious green jobs.


Read more of Donn’s pieces at his blog, Power for USA


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