Nancy Folbre, economics professor, writing her weekly column in the Economix blog at the New York Times, discusses how to boost the sagging national economy by promoting green jobs. She notes that her UMass Amherst colleagues Robert Pollin, James Heintz and Heidi Garrett-Peltier have outlined how energy conservation in public buildings and private homes can generate jobs and save energy. (New York Times, 7/12/10)
But green jobs are definitely on the rise in the United States, as they are elsewhere. A recent Pew Foundation report estimates that the number of them grew nearly two and a half times faster than overall jobs between 1998 and 2007.
And as Professor Pollin and his co-authors James Heintz and Heidi Garrett-Peltier have shown, enormous scope remains for improvements in energy conservation in public buildings and private homes. Doing energy audits and retrofitting insulation require modest training, but no high-tech expertise. Such jobs could be widely distributed across communities.