California's Green Jobs Were Most Resilient During Recession, Fastest Growing Sector

Green jobs are the fastest growing sector in California and saw the least job losses during the height of the recession, according to a report, Many Shades of Green.

From 1995-2010, employment in California’s Core Green Economy grew 53%, while jobs in the wider economy grew 12%.

From January 2009 to January 2010, California’s Core Green Economy saw job losses of 3%, compared to the overall economy’s losses of 7%. 

Out of 15 green industry segments, several actually grew during the height of the recession: Energy Infrastructure (+14%), Advanced Materials (+4%), Clean Transportation (+1%), and Energy Generation (+1%).

San Diego, Bay Area and Sacramento regions are the strongest for green jobs. They lost only 2% during the height of the recession and gained the most over the long term (1995-2010):

Sacramento grew green jobs 113%; the Bay Area, 76%; San Diego region, 65% and Orange County, 62%. 

27% of California’s green jobs are in manufacturing from 1995-2010, expanding 53%. During the same period, general manufacturing jobs contracted by 18%.

"Households and businesses of all shapes and sizes are actively seeking out strategies and products that will insulate them from rising energy costs — this is one big reason manufacturing is growing in the Core Green Economy," says F. Noel Perry, Next 10 founder. "Buying products manufactured in the Core Green Economy helps achieve the goal of reducing dollars spent on energy, and makes even the most traditional companies more resource productive."

The state’s Core Green Economy includes businesses involved in the clean energy sector, those that provide goods and/or services to conserve natural resources, and those that cut pollution and/or repurpose/recycle.

The annual Many Shades of Green report, produced by Next 10, tracks data on employment, business establishments, location, and growth across every green sector and region of California. The report was prepared by Collaborative Economics.

Read the report, 2012 Many Shades of Green: California’s Shift to a Cleaner, More Productive Economy:

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