On The Rise
The huge shift in past years in the green industry has produced an influx of jobs and new positions created to meet the ever-evolving demands of new tech. Sectors such as renewable energy, technology, engineering, utilities, air pollution control, politics, construction, consulting, business, and many more have arisen to meet the global green challenge.
Most of the green jobs are not new occupations, but in fact, jobs that are re-designed to reduce waste and encourage environmental responsibility and sustainability.
Because of these many factors, green jobs have arisen out of regulation at the state or national level, or from the corporate social responsibility policies.These policies that are regulated, and sometimes created by the government, reap the benefit of government backing, producing many more jobs than many other industries.
The enthusiasm for all things green has spilled over to academia as well with many colleges now offering bachelors and masters programs in green studies.
In a study, it was found that Environmental specialist is the number one green job in the US. The median salary for the job was $67,460 in May 2015, which is more than twice the national figure. And there is more good news: the profession is projected to grow at 11% between 2014 and 2024, faster than the national average.
"Environmental specialist," is a job with a pretty broad definition — according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), environmental specialists "use their knowledge of the natural sciences to protect the environment and human health. They may clean up polluted areas, advise policymakers, or work with industry to reduce waste."
Sectors that address clean and alternative energy, renewable energy, bioenergy, fuel cell energy, green building and community design: construction and building materials, green infrastructure, and sustainable development. green knowledge and advocacy: research and development, education, information technology, and nongovernmental organizations all fall under the category of what someone in this field could cover.
It is good to note though, that the salary range would also vary depending on the nature of the work. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data shows that the median annual wage for environmental scientists and specialists was $63,570.
Environmental specialist is only the tip of the iceberg though, so below we have some of the top green jobs that are expected to grow in the next seven years, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
1. Sustainability Consultants
Consulting is a field that has taken off in the business world, and in probably none as much as it has in the green one. According to the College Board, it will lead all other industries with the most jobs created between 2008 and 2018, and is expected to grow by 83 percent. If this is something you can see yourself doing, choosing an area of focus to specialize in would be the next step.
The most popular area is sustainability. Surprisingly with the advancement of technology many businesses and corporations have not kept up or switched over to more eco-friendly practices. They will be needing the help of an experienced sustainability specialist to help them restructure the way they do many things.
In addition, the rise of the appeal to exhibit corporate responsibility, especially with millennials, will be a driving factor to make changes sooner rather than later as competitors and social attitudes continue to lean more green.
Efficacy in production and in the workforce will drive these corporations to reach out for consulting.
The International society of sustainability professionals says, " in 2029, 25 percent of respondents of MIT Sloan Management Reviews sustainability survey of global corporate leaders said they were increasing their commitment to sustainability."
And don't forget, with higher damnd comes the possibility of higher pay. The median annual sales for a green consultant is 83,360. Not too shabby.
2.Wind Turbine Service Technician
Another key player in the eco-friendly line up is that of Windpower. With a 108 percent projected growth rate this year, this sector is just getting charged up and will continue to provide massive amounts of jobs throughout the US.
One of those positions is a wind turbine technician. One on the outside, one can only imagine what it takes just to keep one of those machines running. The technician installs, inspects, diagnoses reads/interprets the blueprints, and repairs all components of the turbine.
Overall, it is estimated that the wind energy sector will employ by 2050 more than 600,000 jobs.
Other careers in this field would be a mechanic, wind turbine mechanic, and wind turbine technician.
3.Green MBA and Entrepreneur
When thinking about the green industry and the people who run the businesses in them, it can be easy to assume, incorrectly, that the stereotypical laid-back live off the earth in seclusion type of character applies to most of the people owning businesses.
But as the Industry has grown and financial opportunities have become more and more abundant, there has been an increase of Eco-Preneurs: (eco entrepreneurs) businessmen and women.
A recent report· by the U S. Conference of Mayors, Mayors Climate Protection Center found that business· services like legal·, research· and consulting account· for the majority· of all green· jobs — over 400, 000. This includes everything from marketing to the LOHAS (Lifestyles of Health and Sustainability) segment, to serving as a VP of sustainability within a large· company, to piloting a green -startup like Method or Recyclebank.
Sustainability business has a market size of around 290 billion, made up of businesses in personal health, green building, and lifestyle brands leaving great room for growth.
One of the biggest advantages of this career is that you don't have to quit your day job and go back to school to learn new skills in order to jump in. Your savvy business and entrepreneurial skills that you carried in your traditional field will effectively carry over, placing you in the right spot to make some money while you are making a difference.
4. Environmental Engineer
One of the largest sectors in the green movement is in engineering. As technology is created, so is the gap between people that need to develop and design it so that consumer can utilize it.
3 Main Types of Engineering
- Chemical Engineer:y 88,280
- Electrical Engineer: 83,110
- Mechanical engineer: 77,020
Environmental engineers are involved in efforts to improve recycling, waste disposal, public health and water and air pollution control. They also address global issues, such as unsafe drinking water, climate change, and environmental sustainability.
Example job titles in this career are:
- air pollution
- control engineer,
- environmental remediation engineer
- pollution control engineer,
- soil engineer
- water treatment plant engineer.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the Environmental engineer's jobs are projected to experience a 30.6 percent growth in 2018.
5. Green Construction Jobs
Constructing a green building means that the materials and practices used are environmentally friendly. Construction companies limit the amount of water and energy they use when building, and the materials used during the construction are often recycled. The number of companies and individuals who are interested in constructing green buildings has grown recently because of the lower cost of materials and the energy savings that can occur throughout the life of the building.
The benefits of having a green building include the efficient use of water, energy and other resources. Others can benefit as well, though, including those who occupy the building. The reduction in environmental hazards can make the building healthier, which can increase productivity.
The supply and demand principle kicks into effect here as more jobs are created because of it. It is projected that by 2018, there will be 3.3 million jobs in green construction.
Construction and building inspectors ensure that construction meets local and national building codes and ordinances, zoning regulations and contract specifications. Inspectors generally perform an initial check during the first phase of construction, follow-up inspections throughout and a final comprehensive inspection.
Examples of jobs in this sector are an architectural inspector, a bridge inspector, building code inspector, construction inspector, electrical inspector, plumbing inspector, plumbing inspector, residential building inspector. Building Custodian the road to Greenbuild, we take a look at jobs in the green building industry that are expected to grow over the next seven years.
Green construction is projected to account for more than 3.3 million U.S. jobs and to generate $190.3 billion in labor earnings between 2015 and 2018, according to the 2015 Green Building Economic Impact Study.
So there you have it. These jobs are great to jump into, and while you may not be in a green job yourself right now, there are still ways that you can contribute to your workplace. What is one thing you can do this week to make your workplace greener?