Making Green Collar Jobs a Reality

July/August 2009
A version of this article appears in the July/August 2009 issue of Home Energy Magazine.
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July 01, 2009
 We are surely living at a critical time for energy policy. For the first time in recent memory, our President, and increasingly our Congress, are making clean energy a cornerstone of our national economic strategy, and doing so in concrete terms of job creation, greenhouse gas reduction, and getting the United States back on track to be a world leader in clean energy. Judging from the scale of investment in the stimulus package, $5.2 billion nationwide and $252.8 million in Pennsylvania for the Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP) alone, the energy efficiency and renewable industries are in for explosive growth. In order to ramp up quickly enough to responsibly deliver on this level of public investment and frankly national expectation and need, it will be essential to invest heavily in workforce development, on a level that is unprecedented. The Energy Coordinating Agency (ECA), a non-profit, has been providing comprehensive low-income energy services in Philadelphia for 25 years. To build capacity at the grassroots level, ECA established a citywide network of what is now 14 Neighborhood Energy Centers, each of which serves as a one-stop-shop for low income energy services. These centers keep us rooted in the communities that we serve, and help make our ...

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