Green Jobs Multiplying in the US, Around the World

Green Jobs Multiplying in the US, Around the World

Many countries are looking to green jobs as a way out of the current recession, and now the United States has joined the bandwagon with a multitude of infrastructure projects planned as part of the upcoming financial stimulus package.

The US plan will cost over $800 billion, with $50-$100 billion set aside for building retrofits, renewable energy tax credit, subway and light rail projects, and environmental restoration programs.

Individual states are also getting a boost. Last week, the U.S. Environmental Agency announced that it awarded a $200,000 grant to the New Jersey Institute for Social Justice to fund job training of 87 unemployed or underemployed people to clean up the state's brownfields.

Green jobs are growing outside the US as well— while each megawatt of installed wind energy capacity creates 4.85 jobs inside the US, the manufacturing of components is often outsourced to countries like China and India.

Of course, not all "green" jobs are necessarily good jobs. A recently released study entitled "High Road or Low Road? Job Quality in the New Green Economy"  found that some employers offer wages beneath the poverty wage standard of $10.19 an hour in household income for a family of four.

"It's not just about jobs. Slaves had jobs," said Larry Cohen, president of the Communications Workers of America at last week's jobs conference in Washington. "It's about green jobs. It's about good jobs. It's about labor jobs."