Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Renewable Energy Bonanza: More Green Jobs

As reported by environmental correspondent Julia Whitty and posted at Grist's The Blue Marble Blog, strong growth in renewable energy projects is accelerating. A study conducted by the Environmental and Energy Study Institute included forecasts and statistics that should encourage individuals and businesses that are renouncing a fossil-fuel future. Among the promising stats:

Energy efficiency now employs 8 million, and renewable energy 450,000, in the U.S. • Renewable energy creates more jobs per megawatt of power installed, unit of energy produced, and dollar invested than fossil energy. • Generating 20 percent of U.S. electricity from new renewable energy by 2020 will add 185,000 new jobs, while cumulatively reducing utility bills $10.5 billion and increasing rural landowner income by $26.5 billion. • A national light vehicle efficiency standard of 35 mpg by 2018 will create 241,000 jobs, including 23,900 in the automotive sector, while saving consumers $37 billion in 2020 alone. • The Massachusetts clean energy sector employs 14,000 and will soon be the state's 10th largest economic sector.

Whitty also points out that renewable energy projects, such as wind farms on pastureland and small-scale methane-generating plants on diary farms, reinvigorate local communities and bring sorely needed revenue into rural areas.