November 16, 2011 – The New York City Labor Market Information Service at the CUNY Graduate Center, along with the New York State Department of Labor and its other research partners, completed a groundbreaking study to answer these questions. In keeping with the priorities of New York State’s Energy Plan, the Green Jobs Study focused on industry clusters that are most involved in energy efficiency and renewable energy: Construction, Building Services, Professional Services and Component Manufacturing.
Within this area of interest, green jobs were then defined as those primarily engaged in producing products or delivering services that increase energy efficiency or generate renewable energy. Detailed findings – also available in the full technical report – were presented this morning at the CUNY Graduate Center to a group of 100 educators, businessmen, and policy makers. Selected high-level findings include:
· Construction, building services, and professional services are greening substantially from within, even though overall job growth is expected to be limited due to the slow recovery from the recent recession. For example, businesses reported that 34 percent of construction jobs in the state and 27 percent in New York City were green as defined by the researchers.
· The green economy is embedded within the general economy and therefore influenced by its condition and its impact on overall customer demand.
· The biggest drivers of the greening of the industry clusters studied are public sector leadership (through regulation and role-modeling) and customer demand, which is stronger in some segments of the built environment than others.
· There is important green-related technological innovation within some sectors studied. A significant number of companies that already have green employment expect to have more green employment a year later.
· The credential type most valued by employers is the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design).
· Most companies that employ green workers indicated that their green jobs require enhanced skills.
· Large-scale training efforts are targeted to upgrading currently employed workers within certain sectors. Significant examples of incumbent training in New York City include:
– Urban Green Council’s G-PRO program, developed in cooperation with number of labor unions, targeted to construction and building services workers;
– SEIU Local 32BJ, Thomas Shortman Fund’s 1000 Supers Program; and
– CUNY Institute for Urban Systems Building Performance Lab training for Operating Engineers and New York City Public School Custodians.
The research activities included a survey of approximately 20,000 employers statewide including every firm in the selected industries with 26 or more employees, and a 20 percent sample of those with 25 or fewer. Other research activities were focus groups with leading-edge firms, interviews with industry experts and a catalogue of educational opportunities both degree and non-degree programs.
The research is summarized in two executive summaries, NEW YORK STATE GREEN JOBS STUDY: KEY STATEWIDE FINDINGS and NEW YORK STATE GREEN JOBS STUDY: NEW YORK CITY FINDINGS. Both reports were written by Ronnie Kauder of the NYCLMIS, along with Lesley Hirsch, NYCLMIS’ director and are both available for download at www.urbanresearch.org on the NEWS and the NYCLMIS web pages. The detailed technical report is also available upon request.
 The two additional research partners included the Advanced Energy Center (AEC) at Stony Brook University and the Energy and Environmental Technical Applications Center (E2TAC) at the University at Albany. NYCLMIS was involved in the design of all research activities but primarily focused its data collection efforts in New York City. The study was funded by the U.S. Department of Labor through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 with assistance from CUNY and the New York City Workforce Investment Board for research activities in New York City.