With experts predicting a jobless recovery, there is one hopeful statistic emerging that is contradicting that prediction. According to The National Governors Association Center for Best Practices (NGA), every state is seeing growth in at least one green industry segment. In most instances, this business growth stems from existing strengths in the state. As part of an effort to help states continue to grow these industries, the NGA Center has created a series of reports analyzing emerging "green" economies in each state in terms of the scope of green business activity reveals areas of comparative advantage, promising areas for workforce development and opportunities for building partnerships within and across green industry segments. It is intended that this information be used to help states analyze their current efforts and form strategies to grow green economies.
The reports also show the extent to which each state's business base is poised to meet the coming demand for green technologies and products such as renewable energy generation systems, low-emission fuels , highly efficient appliances and high-efficiency building materials.
The emerging green economies reports were prepared by,Collaborative Economics Inc (CEI). CEI first developed its methodology to analyze California’s green economy (for The California Green Innovation Index), and refined it further to provide the analysis for the Pew Center on the States to release a state-by-state "count" of clean energy jobs and businesses, a subset of the green economy, that was released earlier this month. Based on the interest many states showed at the Green Economy State Roundtable, the NGA Center arranged for CEI to provide states with some of the more detailed information contained in the California report and that is not in the analysis done for the Pew report.
Each state green profile provides an analysis of the green business activity in the state that includes the following:
- A breakdown of the number of employees in each of the 15 sectors that comprise the green economy. The 15 segments of the green economy are: 1. energy generation; 2. energy efficiency; 3. transportation; 4. energy storage; 5. air & environment; 6. recycling & waste; 7. water & wastewater; 8. agriculture; 9. research & advocacy; 10. business services; 11. finance & investment; 12. advanced materials 13. green building • design & construction; 14. manufacturing & industrial; and 15. energy infrastructure.
- The concentration of employees the state has in those sectors compared to national numbers
- The change in concentration of employees the state has in those sectors over time
- The number of green technology patents
- The amount of venture capital investments in clean technology
You can view your state’s green economy profile or a competing state’s green economy profile at the National Governor's Association Center for Best Practices Web site.
To see how your governor is tackling energy and environmental issues, check out is Greenopia's Ranking of State Governors on Environmental Responsibility
How state governments plan and respond to the green economy could be crucial to our nation climbing out of one of the biggest downturns in decades. These reports are a great resource for determining where the best opportunities for business and employment will be for the forseeable future.