Green Collar, Green Tech, and Green Management Careers: The New Wave of Employment Generation

green-collar.jpgAs many of us in the field recognize, there is a slow but steady growth of “green” positions opening up for traditional blue collar, tech, and professional employees. We can expect this number to increase as our state and federal governments begin diverting money to green employment generation in the near future. recently posted a top ten list of “hot” green jobs. For professionals, we can expect an increase in demand for green brand managers, land use planners, LEED architects, and green venture capitalists. I also foresee an increase in “Green CEO” positions, CSR managers, and green supply chain managers. For the “techies” and chemists, there will be more positions opening up for research and development in alternative energy sources. Finally, we can expect a surge in jobs for the new “green collar” workers, who will work as solar panel installers, biodiesel veggie oil pick-up providers, and green building construction workers. Check out the several other green collar jobs listed by Urban Habitat.

The question that is debated over the emergence of green employment is whether these are “new” jobs that are created, or are green jobs are simply replacing those that are now being phased out? I think we can probably say both. Whether these jobs are “new,” in the sense that they are created in addition to jobs that already existed, or “old,” in the sense that they are replacing positions in outmoded sectors of the economy, is not really the point. With promising signs that our economy is transitioning to eco-efficient modes of production and service provision, we can expect that new sectors of employment will take hold on a larger scale, some sectors will experience a “green transitioning,” and others will simply fall out.

Shannon Arvizu, Ph.D., is a clean tech educator and cutting-edge consultant for the auto industry. You can follow her test drives in the cars of the future at

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