Nearly 750,000 clean tech jobs added in Q1

The clean energy industry is a major source of job creation. Ecotech Institute, a college focused on preparing students for renewable energy careers, released its most recent Clean Jobs Index and revealed U.S. employers posted nearly 750,000 clean tech openings in the first quarter of 2013. As clean energy gains a stronger foothold, a number of jobs require business-related sustainability knowledge. Nearly 60,000 of the positions created in March were in an office environment. Firms looking for qualified recruits with sustainability knowledge can seek out renewable energy recruiters.

The increase in clean jobs was largely bolstered by additions in the solar energy field, more alternative fueling stations and the rise in Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEE​D) certifications. The number of alternative fueling stations rose by 7 percent from the final quarter of 2012. In Q1 2013, LEED certified building space increased 110,000,000 square feet nationally, up five percent from the previous quarter. The solar industry added 8,000 new jobs, including positions in sales, project managers and solar panel manufacturing, suggesting clean jobs include a variety of functions. 

"The Clean Jobs Index shows that there is tremendous job growth in the clean tech sector and signs of positive momentum on the state level for environmental factors that can affect us all," said Kyle Crider, Ecotech Institute's Program Chair and Manager of Environmental Operations. "When we see increases in LEED certifications, we know businesses are making sustainable decisions; when we see an increase in alternative fueling stations, we know people are driving demand for greener forms of transportation. These are powerful indicators."

Areas with the largest gains in Q1
The states with the most clean tech job postings in Q1 were Alabama, Iowa, Michigan, Mississippi, Nebraska, Vermont and West Virginia. The states with the largest growth in available clean energy incentives between Q4 2012 and Q1 2013 were Illinois, Indiana, Massachusetts, Missouri and Oregon, creating potential for the industry to further expand in those areas. The number of electronic car chargers available nationally increased significantly as well. 

The Ecotech Institute's findings indicate the growing importance of clean energy technology as a source of job creation, with positions ranging from sales to installation. As such, firms may find themselves with a wide range of hiring needs. Renewable energy recruiters can help these businesses find qualified talent.