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New York State Green Jobs Study

As part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, the New York State Department of Labor was awarded a $1.1 million grant from the U.S. Department of Labor to conduct research on the green labor market in New York State. This research goes hand-in-hand with New York State´s commitment to increasing energy efficiency and maximizing growth in its clean energy sector, in keeping with the Energy Efficiency Portfolio Standard; the Renewable Portfolio Standards; the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative; and the State Energy Plan.

As one part of the study, the New York State Department of Labor and its research partners surveyed 20,000 businesses in autumn 2010 to determine the number and types of green jobs in the State.  All research findings are posted here.   

Findings

Questions Answered

Policymakers, researchers and the public have a variety of questions about the green labor market in New York State. The Green Jobs Survey begins the work of demystifying green by answering the following questions for several industry clusters involved with producing goods or delivering services that increase energy efficiency or generate renewable energy.   

  • How many firms have green employees?
  • How many workers are green?
  • How do firms expect their green employment to change?
  • What green credentials do firms prefer?
  • Which occupations are green or greening?
  • What areas of green are employees involved with?
  • For which occupations do firms have difficulty recruiting green workers?
  • Which green occupations require more training, and how do workers get this training?

Defining Green

While green touches nearly every sector of the economy, such as agriculture, conservation, education, energy, transportation, etc., New York State’s Green Jobs Survey focused on two specific areas: renewable energy and energy efficiency.

  • Green economic activities:[1] producing goods or delivering services that increase energy efficiency or generate renewable energy
  • Green employer: an employer that engages in green economic activities
  • Green employee: a worker primarily engaged in producing green products or services

Future research may include other green sectors such as pollution abatement or waste remediation, which would require more expansive green definitions.

Industry Spotlight

The Green Jobs Survey was sent to firms in seven industry clusters.[2] For now, the findings are focused on the following four:
  • Construction Trades
  • Building Services
  • Component Manufacturing
  • Professional Services

Research Partners

Survey Conventions

While every effort was made to ensure that the survey findings are representative [3], please note:
  • As with all surveys, results are subject to sample and non-sample sources of error
  • Estimates are based on employer self-identification and have not been independently verified
  • Firm and employment estimates are rounded to the nearest ten
  • Percentages are calculated from unrounded data and rounded to the nearest percentage point

Footnotes:

[1] In Building Services the definition of green economic activities differs slightly to: helping buildings and facilities achieve greater energy efficiency, use new technologies or achieve other environmental sustainability goals.

[2] See Appendix B for a list of 6-digit NAICS codes included in selected industry clusters.

[3] See Appendix A for information on sample selection and data collection.


This workforce solution was funded by a grant awarded by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Employment and Training Administration. The solution was created by the grantee and does not necessarily reflect the official position of the U.S. Department of Labor. The Department of Labor makes no guarantees, warranties, or assurances of any kind, express or implied, with respect to such information, including any information on linked sites and including, but not limited to, accuracy of the information or its completeness, timeliness, usefulness, adequacy, continued availability, or ownership. This solution is copyrighted by the institution that created it. Internal use by an organization and/or personal use by an individual for non-commercial purposes is permissible. All other uses require the prior authorization of the copyright owner.

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