PublicationJournal Article Putting renewables and energy efficiency to work: How many jobs can the clean energy industry generate in the US?

April 4, 2010
Publication Type:
Journal Article

An ana­lyt­i­cal job cre­ation model for the US power sec­tor from 2009 to 2030 is pre­sented. The model
syn­the­sizes data from 15 job stud­ies cov­er­ing renew­able energy(RE), energy effi­ciency (EE), car­bon
cap­ture and stor­age (CCS) and nuclear power. The paper employs a con­sis­tent method­ol­ogy of
nor­mal­iz­ing job data to aver­age employ­ment per unit energy pro­duced over plant life­time. Job losses in
the coal and nat­ural gas indus­try are mod­eled to project net employ­ment impacts. Ben­e­fits and
draw­backs of the method­ol­ogy are assessed and the result­ing model is used for job pro­jec­tions under
var­i­ous renew­able port­fo­lio stan­dards (RPS), EE,and low car­bon energy sce­nar­ios. We find that all non-​​fossil fuel tech­nolo­gies (renew­able energy, EE, low car­bon) cre­ate more jobs per unit energy than coal
and nat­ural gas. Aggres­sive EE mea­sures com­bined with a 30% RPS tar­get in 2030 can gen­er­ate over 4
mil­lion full-​​time-​​equivalent job-​​yearsby 2030 while increas­ing nuclear power to 25% and CCS to 10% of
over all gen­er­a­tion in 2030 can yield an addi­tional 500,000 job-​​years.

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