A new analysis of Department of Energy (DOE) jobs data across the sector demonstrates the key role of clean energy in supporting the American workforce.
Clean energy jobs, including from solar, wind, energy efficiency, smart grid technology and battery storage, vastly outnumber all fossil fuel jobs nationally from the coal, oil and gas sectors, as well as jobs in power generation, mining, and extraction, according to a Sierra Club report.
Nationally, clean energy jobs outnumber all fossil fuel jobs by over 2.5 to 1; and they exceed all jobs in coal and gas by 5 to 1, the US non-profit environmental group claims.
The analysis also demonstrates that 41 states and Washington, DC have more clean energy jobs than fossil fuel jobs from all sources.
Some of the widest gaps where clean energy jobs vastly exceed fossil fuels jobs are in major economies like Florida, North Carolina, Michigan, Virginia, Wisconsin, Georgia, Ohio, Tennessee, Pennsylvania and Indiana. Only nine states have more jobs in fossil fuels than in clean energy, while only six states have more jobs in coal and gas than clean energy — and the growth of clean energy suggests that won’t be the case for long.
Policies to incentivize and invest in clean energy have the potential to create millions of new jobs across the United States, far in excess of the reality and potential of the fossil fuel sector, the Sierra Club maintains.
Proactive investment in workforce development is also critical, especially considering that almost three-quarters of employers across all energy sectors found it difficult to hire skilled workers, according to DOE data.