A new report finds that clean energy jobs in Colorado have grown at a rate that is twice as fast as overall job growth. The report, by The Pew Charitable Trusts, finds that in 2007, the number of jobs in the sector had risen by more than 18 percent during the prior 10 years, to include more than 17,000 jobs in the state.
Phyllis Cuttino, director of the U.S. Global Warming Campaign for the Pew Environment Group, said other studies have looked at growth in the clean energy sector, but this report is the first to do a hard count of jobs.
“We know that these jobs grew at a faster pace than jobs in the overall economy. These jobs in the clean energy economy outperformed traditional American jobs,” Cuttino said.
Colorado is a bright spot in an even-brighter national trend, said Cuttino. “The private sector really sees this as an investment. In 2008, venture capitalists — even in a downturn — invested $12.6 billion in the clean energy economy.”
The report breaks new ground in actually measuring the economic impact of clean energy, she added.
“Now we have a definition of a job that exists in the clean energy economy. For the first time, we have an actual count of every supply-side clean energy job.”
Critics of previous reports on how a clean energy economy could lead to job growth and business investments pointed to flaws in formulas used to make estimates. This report counted actual jobs and investments. Nationally, jobs in the clean energy economy grew at a rate of about nine percent from 1998 to 2007, while total jobs grew at less than half that rate.
The full report, The Clean Energy Economy: Repowering Jobs, Businesses and Investments Across America, can be viewed online at www.pewtrusts.org.
— Colorado News Connection