Obama Allots Funding for Green Jobs, Here's Where to Find Them

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Unless you are sans television, Internet or any other form of news media, you’ve most likely noticed the hype over green jobs and their expected rise in the coming years.

On Jan. 8, when President Obama announced the award of $2.3 billion in Recovery Act Advanced Energy Manufacturing Tax Credits for clean energy manufacturing projects nationwide. The funding will be provided to 183 projects in 43 states, creating tens of thousands of clean energy jobs and the manufacturing of clean energy technologies.

A recent report estimated approximately 37 million jobs are likely to be created in the renewable energy and energy efficiency (RE&EE) industries in the U.S. by the year 2030. Photo: Flickr/greenforall.org
Giving the people what they want: A recent report estimated approximately 37 million jobs are likely to be created in the renewable energy and energy efficiency (RE&EE) industries in the U.S. by the year 2030. Photo: Flickr/greenforall.org

If the New Year is your inspiration to jump into a new green career, luck may be on your side if you live in or are willing to relocate to one of “the five best cities for green jobs,” as reported by the Huffington Post.

1. New York City - On Earth Day 2007, the Big Apple launched PlaNYC, a program with 127 initiatives for greening the city, including retrofitting buildings for energy efficiency and striving for the cleanest air quality of any big U.S. city.

2. San Francisco – California leads the nation in clean energy jobs, with approximately 125,000 jobs in the sector. Around San Francisco, the clean jobs rate is sure to be on the rise with a recently passed $100 million in revenue bonds to support renewable energy projects.

San Francisco became the first city in the U.S. to pass a mandatory recycling and composting law in an effort to achieve a city-wide goal of zero waste by 2020. The city already boasts the nation’s highest recycling rate, at an impressive 72 percent.

3. Boston – With a new single stream recycling program and a huge reliance on wind power, Boston is beginning to finds itself a regular participant on top green lists. With new buildings having to be constructed to meet LEED certification standards, green construction and engineering jobs are on the rise.

4. Detroit – OK, this one shocked us too. In your typical eco-chat around the water cooler, Detroit probably isn’t a common word to spill out of your mouth. But upon closer inspection, perhaps it does deserve to be in this esteemed list. With the highest unemployment rate of any state hovering around 15 percent, Michigan has one direction to go: up.

Federal Department of Energy green technology grants have been awarded to the state to fund factories and create green jobs where skilled automotive expertise already exists in Detroit. Detroit holds promising careers for skilled laborers and engineers working with auto companies to bring hybrid and electric technology to the forefront of the American auto industry.

5. Portland – Not surprising that Portland tops out the top five list as the city has long been recognized for its green efforts. Portland gets half of its power from renewable energy sources, 35 percent of its buildings have been certified by the U.S. Green Building Council and a quarter of the workforce commutes to work via bike, carpool or public transportation. The Pew Charitable Trust reports that Oregon was the No. 1 performer in the creation of clean energy jobs, with more than 20,000 in 2007.