Tag Archives: Paperman

Green Jobs Everywhere?

Everyone wants jobs. People in the U.S. want them, people in the Arab Spring countries want them, people in the poorest countries on the planet want them too. But are there enough to go around? Or more accurately, are there enough jobs that people want and can do, to go around? (There’s definitely a never-ending demand for physicians, engineers, and other professionals that is not being met but that is not something that can immediately be addressed.)

People complain all the time that there are not enough jobs but if you really look at what’s available, that’s just not true. There are jobs but most people don’t want to either do the work because they don’t like it or aren’t willing to increase their skills to take the new jobs on.

Fortunately, with necessity being the mother of invention, attitudes are shifting and there are some interesting prospects opening.

For one thing, “green” jobs are increasing, the need for skilled and semi-skilled workers is also increasing, and those jobs all the politicians promised are actually starting to show up.

What is interesting is that they’re not just here in the U.S. Green jobs of all sorts and at all levels are showing up worldwide.

An interesting example of this is one of the countries with the worst poverty in the world, India. People in the city of Chennai are being encouraged to recycle by having their children take paper trash to school. This is then collected by “rag-pickers” the poorest of the poor, who will sell it on to dealers. The system is a win-win. Recycling is becoming a part of Chennai society, the environment benefits, poor people get some added income, and huge amounts of paper trash that would have gone into landfills costing the city money, is saved.

On the other side of the world, in California, as we shift to a more and more green economy, it turns out those jobs linked to that economy are proving to be more recession resistant than some others.

A lot of this may be simply due to the fact that people can actually save money by “going green.” Being environmentally conscious and responsible seems to go along well with being fiscally conscious and responsible. People are weighing the big tax breaks that oil and gas companies are getting against the tax breaks that alternative energy companies are getting, and the costs – both environmentally and in cash  — and finding the oil companies coming up somewhat short.

Maybe this green economy idea might work after all? Stay tuned.

Thanks for stopping by,

Heather McC

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